India summons US diplomat, faces diplomatic heartburns

Gloria Berbena UD diplomat

Gloria Berbena UD diplomat

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India summons US diplomat over remarks on Kejriwal arrest

By Our Special Correspondent

New Delhi, March 27: India on Wednesday summoned US diplomat Gloria Berbena to protest remarks made by Washington on the arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. India has asked the US not to make statements on internal affairs of the country.

The Ministry of External Affairs told US diplomat Berbena that remarks on the judicial process amounts to interference. “We take strong objections to the remarks made by the US State Department about certain legal proceedings. In diplomacy, states are expected to be respectful of the sovereignty and internal affairs of others,” said the MEA in the statement.

The US State Department during a regular press briefing had said that Washington would hope for a time-bound investigation in the matters concerning Kejriwal. The State Department had also stated that the US is closely following the issue involving the arrest of the Delhi Chief Minister.

Earlier, the German Ministry for Foreign Affairs had also remarked on the arrest of Kejriwal. Germany had said that the basic rule of law that presumption of innocence should apply in the case of Kejriwal. Germany had also said that Berlin was keeping a close tab on the arrest of Kejriwal.

Incidentally, the US and Germany are strategic partners of India. The US and Germany are also G7 members. Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the past few years has been regularly invited to the summits of the G7.

While the US and Germany have officially reacted to the arrest of Kejriwal, the western media is also actively reporting the ongoing protests in the national capital. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders continue to protest in the national capital against the arrest of Kejriwal. The Delhi unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is also staging protests against Kejriwal issuing orders while being in the custody of the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

The foreign media is particularly spotlighting the election-eve arrest of Kejriwal. The Delhi Chief Minister was arrested ahead of the first phase of the Lok Sabha elections. The last date of filing the nomination papers for the first phase of the election is Wednesday.

Accused arrested by the ED in the prevention of money laundering act (PMLA) rarely get bail. The BJP critics are claiming that Kejriwal was taken into custody with aims to stop him from campaigning for the Lok Sabha elections. Before his arrest, Kejriwal was actively campaigning in the BJP stronghold Gujarat. The AAP and the Congress has entered into a seat adjustment pact for Delhi and Gujarat.

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