THAROOR-SPEAK … Shashi Tharoor MP rubs rivals the wrong way … all are deeply embarrassed

NEW DELHI: Irrepressible Member of Parliament, Shashi Tharoor, has waded into a new controversy — over a facebook post he made on Saturday in the context of the large-scale criticism  about his proposal to the Opposition that PM Modi’s good deeds should be praised and only wrong deeds be criticised.

Wholesale criticism, as his own Congress party and other Opposition parties did about Modi would result in a loss of credibility for the Opposition, he had said. To which, several Congress leaders from Kerala — his native place and from where he was elected to Parliament– reacted sharply. Tharoor’s post about a Barnard Shah quote, “I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it.” The post sent the social media enthusiasts to guffaws of laughter and more teasing comments. 

Firing volleys of criticism against Shashi Tharoor were mainly Congress leaders. Some of them questioned why Rahul Gandhi had not taken a serious note of Tharoor’s pro-Modi observation, and not taken the former Union minister to tassk. Two Kerala politicians of the Congress shade, namely Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala and Congress party MP from Vadakara, K Muraleedharan, son of deceased former CM, K Karunakaran were among those who attacked Tharoor sharply for his “pro-Modi” comment.

It however was not clear whether Tharoor aimed his post at any leader as such, or carried it as a general comment in a casual manner and not related to a special context. Yet, the timing of the post was significant.

Many Congress politicians in Kerala are said to be jealous of Shashi Tharoor, for the adulation he gets wherever he goes or attends events. Tharoor is three-time MP from Thiruvananthapuram, and looked electorally unassailable. It had been rumoured that some Congress leaders from the state had unsuccessfully tried to prevail on the central party leadership before the 2019 LS polls, not to re-field Tharoor from Thiruvananthapuram this time.

Notably, Tharoor’s “pig post” came shortly after Muraleedharan made a stinging criticism of the TVM MP, pooh-poohed the former UN diplomat’s  Oxford English and said it was not necessary to win the Lok Sabha seat, as the Congress party was always strong in the capital. The hint was also that Tharoor’s personal charisma meant little in the electoral victory.

By another post, Tharoor said the BJP seemed to be changing for the better. EI-NN


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