New Delhi, Jan 31 (Agencies): In a diplomatic setback, the US on Monday sought to justify the use of ankle monitors on Indian students, duped by now shut Tri-Valley University, saying it was common practice across America as a standard procedure for a various probes and does not necessarily imply guilt or suspicion.
The US reply followed a retort by Indian government which termed the use of trackers as "unacceptable" and asked for their removal.

After being duped by a California-based "sham" university, hundreds of Indian students in the US were forced to wear radio collars around their ankles so that authorities can track their movements.

"US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have established a helpline for the Indian students affected by the closure of Tri-Valley University in California, under which any affected student may call to seek help. Some of those involved in the Tri-Valley investigation have been issued ankle monitors.

"Use of ankle monitors is widespread across the United States and standard procedure for a variety of investigations, and does not necessarily imply guilt or suspicion of criminal
activity. An ankle monitor sends a radio frequency signal containing location and other information to a receiver. It allows for freedom of movement and is a positive alternative
to confinement during a pending investigation," the US Embassy here said in a statement.

It added that the US government welcomes all legitimate students wishing to study there and would encourage prospective students to protect themselves from predatory visa fraud rings.