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Modi refuses to meet US Congressional team

Ahmedabad, Dec 17, 2013 (PTI):
Gujarat CM Narendra Modi. PTI photo

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi today refused to meet a senior US Congressional delegation as a mark of protest against the treatment meted out to India's Deputy Consul General in New York.

"Refused to meet the visiting USA delegation in solidarity with our nation, protesting ill treatment meted to our lady diplomat in USA," Modi tweeted.

The delegation comprising Congressmen George Holding (Republican - North Carolina), Pete Olson (Republican - Texas) David Schweikert (Republican - Arizona), Robert Woodall (Republican - Georgia) and Madeleine Bordallo (Democrat - Guam) was scheduled to meet Modi. However, it was not immediately known when the meeting was scheduled.

India has reacted sharply to Deputy Consul General Devyani Khobragade being arrested and handcuffed in public on visa fraud charges last week in the US. It had summoned US Ambassador Nancy Powell and issued a demarche in this regard.

39-year-old Khobragade, a 1999-batch IFS officer, was taken into custody on a street in New York as she was dropping her daughter to school before being released on a USD 250,000 bond after pleading not guilty in court. Earlier today, Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde cancelled his meeting with the US delegation in New Delhi.

Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar had also cancelled her meeting with the delegation yesterday as she felt it was not "appropriate" to meet the Parliamentarians of the US, which has badly treated one of India's senior diplomats.
National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon also did not meet the US team yesterday apparently for the same reason.


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