The Devyani Khobargade saga will continue as no resolution seems to be in sight.
It will actually fade away perhaps with the Khobargades finally kneeling to the law under pressure from several quarters. If one was to treat this as an individual’s personal business and not a matter of national pride, diplomats and diplomacy would have been served better. US-India relations especially the arms trade will however not be affected … not by this.
The problem is that the elections and domestic sentiments are more important now. Also one doesn’t know the out come of deals and who will be the beneficiary (if there are to be any) till the election outcomes are known. Is it a matter of timing in the US-India relations that they are waiting for Khobargade episode and parliamentary elections are over? The tunes will change and Khobargades better make use of the windows they have before the next court hearing and then the Indian parliamentary elections.
Of diplomacy and people of stature
One doesn’t have to write from a hindsight to know that sagacious counsel has not been there on the part of India right from the beginning. Alas have we lost all sensible leaders? In a land where leaders have shown high integrity and fortitude from the days of Chanakya and Kautilya to modern day Tilak, Lal Bahadur Shastri , Kiran Bedi, Manekshaw and Narayan Rao … to randomly name a few, the list can go on as there is no dearth of people of integrity and wisdom in India. Unfortunately their numbers are less visible and their voices never heard in matters of trash such as this incident.
In diplomacy there is a thing called a first-action advantage. History is replete with examples where one country springs a surprise over the other to gain a diplomatic advantage. India seems to be constantly under such an advantage by everyone else. Surely our policy must be dumb not to gain some advantage. There is also a matter of moral ascendency, which we so much love to uphold, but loose very easily.
US-India relations: tit for tat
Has it not been immaturity on the part of the Indian government to react to this whole episode in a tit for tat manner. Most of it makes no sense.
Devyani’s case is a personal matter and why does the MEA get affected. Fraud is a crime in any country. Apparently there is a conflict of interest. As such we don’t understand conflict of interest as an essential part of corruption free governance.
Question: will someone else who doesn’t enjoy the privileges as Devyani through her father, have got this protective hand of the government? Under normal circumstances what would a boss have told his/her employee … ‘Hey look you employed Sangeetha, please could you see that it does not conflagrate or why don’t we send her back (before June) or just pay her off and send her back. Or explain to the US authorities that the matter is being investigated and necessary action will be taken’. What did the MEA do? We just want to know. It is possible they didn’t anticipate all this stuff. If so, I will question the IQ of these people to be our diplomats.
Why are the MEA getting her diplomatic status which has an end date and she still has charges levied against her. Was this not a band aid approach? She can’t leave the US even after her tenure in the UN. (Lack of strategic thinking clouded by trying to protect her).
The commonsense test
We want to know why she is being protected?
1. GOI removes barricades and perhaps suggests the US consulate to shut down. They (US) can and will do business as usual. They can buttress their defences with their own resources. So what was the point in this show of tit for tat?
2. GOI wants to know salaries that the US staff is being paid around the country … this will be the biggest laugh! Show me a US national being paid less than the minimum wage in India!
The Nations’ pride should be surely hurt with such people representing us everywhere.
The first thing would be get this counselor (the job as counselor eventually leads to Ambassadorship … heavens be praised) to undergo trial, which she should not fear as she is not guilty of fraud or is she?