India bulldozes security barriers at US Embassy

Authorities in India removed security barriers in front of the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi on Tuesday in an act of revenge after the arrest of an Indian diplomat in New York last week. 

Police used bulldozers and tow trucks to remove concrete barricades at the embassy, Reuters reports. The barriers are meant to block traffic on the road in front of the embassy.

Indian news outlet IBN reports authorities have also halted import clearances, thereby preventing American diplomats there from importing anything.

Last week, India’s deputy consul general in New York, Devyani Khobragade, was arrested for allegedly underpaying her nanny and committing visa fraud to get her into the United States.

The deputy consul general faces a maximum of 15 years in prison if convicted on both counts, Reuters reports. 

Khobragade, according to Indian media, was handcuffed last week during the arrest, and then was strip-searched before being released on bail.

The country’s national security adviser, Shivshanker Menon, called the U.S. authorities’ behavior “barbaric,” the Reuters report said.  

Because of the dispute, Indian politicians, including Menon, refused to meet with a U.S. congressional delegation visiting India this week.

On Monday, State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said diplomatic security staff followed regular procedures during the arrest last week, and then handed her off to U.S. Marshals.