Energy dialogue out, Devyani in; India cancels talks over diplomat row

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India-USA
New Delhi, Jan 9: The Indian government has taken the Devyani Khobragade arrest very seriously, so much so that it has cancelled an energy dialogue with USA. As per official reports, the Indian government has indefinitely postponed the dialogue as a way to protest the diplomat's indictment of deadline.

Moreover, the approval for Khobragade's G-1 visa, which could provide her full diplomatic immunity on her transfer to India's permanent mission to the US, is also not finalised.

Although not officialy out, it is clear that the meeting has been cancelled on the urge of India.America too is in denial mode. A US administration source on anonimity said, "I can confirm that USA energy secretary Moniz is no longer traveling to India next week. We have been in conversation with Indian counterparts about the dates, and we have agreed to hold the Dialogue in the near future at a mutually convenient date."

Earlier this week, Vikram Doraiswamy, the Indian joint secretary for the Americas, had told Nancy Powell (US ambassador) that relations between the two will "not be business as usual".

It goes without saying that a number of engagements have come to a stand still over the diplomat row. However, the Energy dialogue was a significant one where both the countries would be discussing the export of cheap natural gas, sought by many countries. It is said that the US has licensed two exporters to supply natural gas to India.

However, unless there is a concrete solution to the Khobragade row, all energy initiatives that may be fruitful for both the parties will have to wait.

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