U.S. to withdraw diplomat at India’s request as dispute festers

By David Brunnstrom and Frank Jack Daniel WASHINGTON/NEW DELHI (Reuters) – The United States said on Friday it would withdraw one of its diplomats from New Delhi at India’s request after Washington effectively expelled an Indian envoy at the center of a dispute between the allies. Devyani Khobragade, 39, who was India’s deputy consul-general in New York, was arrested in December on charges of visa fraud and lying to U.S. authorities about what she paid her housekeeper. Khobragade’s arrest and strip-search provoked protests in India and dealt a serious blow to U.S. efforts to strengthen ties. An indictment announced by U.S. prosecutors on Thursday accused Khobragade of making her Indian housekeeper and nanny, Sangeeta Richard, work 100-hour, seven-day weeks for a salary of little more than $ 1 an hour and refusing her sick days and holidays.
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