Row over spying dwarfs McCain visit

New Delhi: US Senator John McCain’s visit to India has been overshadowed by a row over reports that the NSA was authorised to spy on the BJP IN 2010. McCain who arrived on Wednesday to the Capital cancelled a news conference due to be held outside India’s foreign ministry after India summoned a senior US diplomat to the ministry over the spying report.
 
The US and Indian officials gave differing explanations for the cancellation, but said it was not linked to the row. India sought an assurance that any such surveillance would not recur.

Indo-US relations have been delicate for months, following a major spat over the treatment meted out to Indian diplomat, Devyani Khobragade, arrested in New York in December, an incident that was widely blamed for the resignation of the US ambassador to New Delhi.

Obama government has sought to revive ties since Narendra Modi’s big election win in May, with an eye to ramping up bilateral trade and defence deals with India.

McCain, whose Arizona constituency is host to some of Boeing and Raytheon’s most important defence businesses, told the Senate last week that Washington should seek to help India’s economic and military development.

US Secretary of State John Kerry is also expected to visit India soon.

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