Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Saturday assured External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna that the issue of Indian students enrolled in the now-closed Tri-Valley University would receive her promptest attention and that “justice” would be done.
Ms. Clinton gave the assurance during a 40-minute telephonic conversation with the Minister, a high-level Indian source said. The issue of the allegedly tainted TVU is understood to have figured prominently in Mr. Krishna's conversation during when Ms. Clinton agreed to personally intervene in the matter.
Ms. Clinton has asked Indian Ambassador to the U.S Meera Shankar to meet her on Monday and provide all details, the source said, adding this would be followed up with her meeting with Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao on Tuesday.
“She [Ms. Clinton] has ensured that justice will be done to the Indian students,” the source told PTI.
According to a federal complaint filed in a California court in January, the University helped foreign nationals illegally acquire immigration status. The university is said to have 1,555 students. As many as 95 per cent of these students are from India, the complaint said. Most of the Indian students are from Andhra Pradesh.
Mr. Krishna told Ms. Clinton that these students who came on legal visas stood to lose out academically and financially and they should be allowed time to find another university for transfer before being deported.
“Our guys have been cheated,” is the sentiment Mr.Krishna put across to Ms. Clinton, according to sources.
Recently, 18 students in California were radio-tagged by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement as part of their investigation against TVU. Ankle monitors send a radio frequency signal containing location and other information to a receiver. So far, two students have been de-tagged.
The Minister, according to sources, also said the radio-tagging of students was unacceptable, and Ms. Clinton has assured him that within the next 15 days, these radio-tags would be removed.
Mr. Krishna met 30 of these students on Saturday. Many of them said they were stuck here without any concrete plan to get out of their dilemma and needed help from the government.
Ms. Clinton and Mr. Krishna also discussed her upcoming visit to New Delhi for the India-U.S. strategic dialogue and also the recent events in Egypt.
Nothing wrong: Krishna
On the faux pas at the United Nations Security Council debate when he inadvertently read out bits of the Portuguese Foreign Minister Luis Amado's speech, Mr. Krishna said these things happened because many of the speeches made the same initial points.
“There was nothing wrong in it,” Mr. Krishna said, adding “there were so many papers spread in front of me, so by mistake the wrong speech was taken out.”
Speaking at the debate on security and development on Friday, Mr. Krishna read out the wrong speech for about three minutes before being corrected by India's envoy to the UN Hardeep Singh Puri.