21 Ways Indians Reacted To A Diplomat Being Strip-Searched By The U.S.

Vandalizing a pizza outlet, burning Obama’s effigies, and removing security barriers outside the U.S. Consulate.

The arrest and strip-search of Devyani Khobragade, an Indian diplomat in New York accused of alleged visa fraud, has strained relationships between India and the U.S. This is how India reacted to her “humiliating” and “barbaric” treatment by the U.S.

Stringer / Reuters

1. Protestors from a small political party called Republican Party of India vandalized a Dominos Pizza outlet in Mumbai, demanding a ban on U.S. goods.

2. No one was hurt in the attack according to the police and the Indian franchise of the U.S. pizza chain.

Mansi Thapliyal / Reuters

A policeman is seen through a broken glass window of the Dominos Pizza outlet after it was ransacked by activists of the Republican Party of India (RPI) in Mumbai on Dec. 20.

3. The student wing of the Congress, India’s ruling party, protested outside the U.S. consulate in Mumbai. The message on the sign “Atithi Dev Bhavo” translates to “The Guest is God.”

AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool
Danish Siddiqui / Reuters
Danish Siddiqui / Reuters

6. Supporters of a Hindu hardline group, the Rashtrawadi Shiv Sena, shouted anti-U.S. slogans during a protest near the U.S. embassy in the nation’s capital of New Delhi.

Ahmad Masood / Reuters
Ahmad Masood / Reuters

The Washington Post explained the photograph above:

“The half-naked man is meant to represent both the United States (see: American flag) and President Obama; he is naked both to symbolize the affront of Khobragade’s strip-search and as a declaration that the United States and Obama deserve similar humiliation as punishment. The man in the suit with the Obama mask is tied up to likewise symbolize Khobragade’s arrest.”

Ahmad Masood / Reuters

9. Members of the Democratic Youth Federation of India protested outside the U.S. consulate in Kolkata on Dec. 19.

Stringer/India / Reuters

Police detain members of the DYFI during a protest outside the U.S. consulate office in Kolkata.

10. Activists from a political party affiliated with India’s main opposition party — the BJP — burned Obama effigies during a protest in the eastern Indian city of Bhubaneshwar.

Stringer/India / Reuters

11. Protestors burned an Obama effigy in the city of Ajmer in west India.

AP Photo/Deepak Sharma
AP Photo/Deepak Sharma

13. India’s Left Party activists protested near the U.S. consulate in the city of Hyderabad.

AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.
AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.

Left Party activists shout slogans from inside a truck after being detained by police during during their protest near the U.S. Consulate in Hyderabad on Dec. 19.

15. Police removed security barricades that were erected as a safety measure outside the U.S. embassy in New Delhi.

AP Photo

16. On one of the top-rated primetime shows on an English news channel, anchor Arnab Goswami blatantly criticized the U.S.’s handling of the matter.

On his primetime show, The Newshour, Arnab Goswami grilled Martina Vandenberg, President of Human Trafficking Pro Bono Legal Center, on America’s handling of the case. He said, “There has been considerable time for America to understand the deep mistake it has made and the hurt it has caused.”

He also came down strongly on America’s “supercop attitude” and asked Vandenberg if the American authorities have had time “to reflect on the massive mistakes they are making one after the other.”

He added that “America can no longer expect to get away with this rubbish.”

17. Goswami also berated U.S. Attorney for NY, Preet Bharara for defending the U.S. in the matter.

"BIASED? INCOMPETENT?" Preet Bharara screenshots from Arnab Goswami, India's Bill O'Reilly:

— jonathanshainin (@Jonathan Shainin)

Goswami said Preet Bharara was the man “responsible for the arrest and humiliation of an honest diplomat.”

He added that Bharara’s comments have led him to being “completely isolated tonight, so much so that even America has distanced itself from his biased and prejudiced view in the case.”

18. The hashtag #DevyaniHumiliated trended on Twitter as Indians took to social media to express their differing opinions on the issue.

#TitForTat @timesnow India says all diplomats serving in US consulates all over India must turn in their ID cards #DevyaniHumiliated

— amruthhr (@Amruth)

#DevyaniHumiliated Announce last priority to US diplomats & families everywhere in India. A spl measure strip search them incl USambassador


Because lifting barricades from outside the US embassy is the same as being stripped. Face palm. #DevyaniHumiliated

— tarini28 (@Tarini Kumar)

You know what's insulting? Our jingoism when it comes to women disrespected abroad, and apathy when they are raped here. #DevyaniHumiliated

— lindsaypereira (@lindsay pereira)

19. A Facebook group called “I support Devyani Khobragade” was started and has more than 900 likes.

20. Narendra Modi, the opposition party’s prime ministerial candidate for 2014, refused to meet a U.S. delegation in India to protest the treatment of “our lady dipolmat.”

Refused to meet the visiting USA delegation in solidarity with our nation, protesting ill-treatment meted to our lady diplomat in USA.

— narendramodi (@Narendra Modi)

21. In a rare show of unity, politcians from rival political parties collectively outraged at Khobragade’s arrest.

Agree with leaders across political spectrum, We should send very strong msg to US for treatment meted out to Devyani. #DevyaniHumiliated

— ShahnawazBJP (@Shahnawaz Hussain)

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Tasneem Nashrulla is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Tasneem Nashrulla at
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