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Posts Tagged ‘Shashi Tharoor’

Political Cannibalism – In defense of Shashi Tharoor

April 19, 2010 Leave a comment

Shashi Tharoor stepped down as Minister of State for External Affairs today. Made me real unhappy.  I felt particularly sad because IPL, a highly commercialized version of the game that keeps half the country glued to the idiot box, provided the context for his resignation. His (forced!) resignation is well deserved in case Tharoor misused his office. However there is no shred of evidence which proved his involvement in the IPL bid process. He had to step down on the basis of accusations.

Tharoor was capable, honest, forthright, intelligent and well meaning. We all know that these are not the qualities that makes a good politician. Funnily, Tharoor knew it well too, as his book The Great Indian Novel bears testimony. How do we interpret his current predicament then?

Ever since he took office, the media and political cabal were at his throat. It was seldom appreciated that he was the only minister who twittered, expressed his opinions frankly and openly, attempted to reach out to public and answered their queries in real time while other politicians closely guarded their statements and practiced obfuscation to perfection. Hyperactive TV and print media made headlines of his twitter posts. Sensationalism being its mainstay, media blew the IPL case too out of proportion with scant regard for truth and provided Tharoor’s detractors the opportunity they had been waiting for. That his aptitude and credentials were detested by his associates was evident from the clamour for his resignation that came from within the Congress party and the vociferous opposition. The people who called for his resignation were no saints. In a clear case of the pots calling the kettle black, the criminals, unscrupulous politicians and avaricious businessmen that made up the brigade assumed moral superiority over Tharoor.

Gandhigiri has its limits – Shashi Tharoor wanted to be the change that he wanted to see in Indian politics, but then he hoped to see too much change too fast. The old vanguard who fiercely defended their home turf has dealt him the first blow. But I’m certain that he has sufficient mettle to withstand it and return the punch. The pursuit of personal aggrandizement for which most people join politics cannot be easily replaced with dedication to the service of the nation easily. Purging the Aegean stables is a painful process that would require many sacrifices, but the time will come, Plato’s Republic still has hope, if someone like Shashi Tharoor does not succumb. In Tharoor I perceive the kind of politician I would rather follow. I would prefer him anytime to the Mayawati’s, Shibu Soren’s, Kalyan Singh’s, Advani’s, Shekhawat’s and Modi’s . Best of luck, Mr. Tharoor. May you return vindicated.

P.S: Thanks to Tharoor controversy, the IPL Pandoras box is now open for scrutiny. Wish the real goons get burned big time too….

Categories: Musings

The Father Of The Nation

October 5, 2009 2 comments

2nd October. The day all Indians enjoy a mandatory holiday. The day politicians pay lip service to M K Gandhi. The day Shashi Tharoor twittered “Gandhiji said”Work is Workship” & we enjoy holiday on his birthday. He wld hv wanted us to work harder today”. It hurt our sentiments. What a spoil sport, why prick the conscience, when life is all jingalala (!!). Anyway, Congress immediately clarified that it was Mr. Tharoor’s personal opinion, that the party respected our desire to spent the entire day in silent, non violent contemplation of Gandhian ideals.

 The malls were full in the evening, a discount sale was on, movie tickets were soldout, tourist resorts were overbooked, bars were closed but homes were well stocked, Montblanc launched a golden pen in commemoration and restaurants offered special Gandhi Jayanti meals.

As the sun set, The Father of the Nation, bent over his staff, walked along the road to oblivion, in vain search of the truth to set us free.

Categories: Musings

Trivial Controversies

September 17, 2009 Leave a comment

In India, we have a penchant for trivial controversies.

Sometime back, there was a great hue and cry about the former president Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam being frisked at an airport. No one seemed to care that it is a routine security check to ensure safety of all passengers. Dr. Kalam was silent on the matter, but the debate ran on vociferously in the media for a week.

The latest one is about an innocuous comment in Twitter by Shashi Tharoor on cattle class and holy cow, the economics of air travel. An innocent take on the current govenrment’s ostensible austerity measures, the remark is being blown out of proportion. Suddenly the cow is finding itself at the centre of a controversy beyond bovine imagination. Shashi Tharoor will henceforth be Shashi Cattleclass Tharoor, branding him the champion of Holy Cow politics. I guess, he would achieve a new perspective of India – from midnight to milennium.

Ultimately, it all boils down to sickening opportunism and a severe lack of sense of humor. It’s the price Mr. Tharoor has to pay for courting Indian politics. He had better moo and enjoy it.

Categories: Musings