Devyani Khobragade case: '3 options available to US for resolving diplomatic row'

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The State Department had received the necessary paper work for the UN transfer of Devyani Khobragade on December 20. The State Department had received the necessary paper work for the UN transfer of Devyani Khobragade on December 20.
SummaryTopping three options is giving full diplomatic immunity to Khobragade by accepting her credentials to the UN before the criminal charges are filed against her.

Even as prosecutors pressing for indictment of Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade on January 13, three possible options for resolving the issue are believed to be under discussion within the US administration.

Topping the three options is giving full diplomatic immunity to Khobragade, who was arrested in New York on December 12 on charges of visa fraud and misrepresentation, by accepting her credentials to the UN before the criminal charges are filed against her by the Department of Justice, sources said.

This is said to be the preferred option under present circumstances and is believed to be supported by those in the administration who are ardent supporters of India-US relationship and do not want the Devyani episode to derail the strengthening ties between the two countries.

The second option is to accept the UN transfer of 39-year-old Khobragade only after she is criminally charged. This would give some tense moments to both the Indian diplomat and also New Delhi, sources said.

The State Department had received the necessary paper work for the UN transfer of Khobragade on December 20. More than a fortnight after that the State Department continues to review the paper work and is taking an unusually long time.

The final option is to refuse to accept Khobragade's UN transfer due to pending criminal charges, the sources said.

Though the least preferred option, it is said to be advocated by those in the administration who want to "teach a lesson" to India for taking up retaliatory measures against the only super power of the world by removal of security barriers outside its Embassy in New Delhi and withdrawing privileges of its diplomats.

Though, currently in minority, supporters of the third option argue that other countries might soon follow the Indian path, if Washington does not take strong action against New Delhi.

However, sources said, no final decision has been taken as yet and it is very possible that a high-level intervention might be required to take a final call on resolving the issue.

The third option, friends of India-US ties in Washington argue, would derail the bilateral relationship at least for the next several years.

Khobragade has sought a one-month extension of the deadline for charging her in the visa fraud case but her plea has been opposed by the prosecution.

The US has categorically ruled out "apology" and "withdrawal" of charges against Khobragade.

The officials from both India and

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