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Backlash over India-US diplomat row fuels investment fears

Published on Dec 22, 2013 12:19 PM

NEW DELHI (AFP) - A furious anti-US backlash in India over the arrest and strip-search of one of its diplomats threatens to further scare off foreign investors already baulking at what they see as a hostile climate, analysts say.

The economic fallout from the spat, which led to the unprecedented sight of India bulldozing security barricades outside the US embassy in New Delhi last week, will only become evident in months to come.

But "it is clear this is not a PR victory that will help attract investors to India", Rajiv Kumar, director of the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations, told AFP.

The diplomat, Devyani Khobragade, arrested on charges of lying on a US visa application about how much she paid her Indian maid, said she had been strip-searched and "cavity-searched" and was detained with "common criminals and drug addicts".

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