Tharoor under friendly fire


Congress sentiments hurt by Tharoor’s praise of Modi’s Swachcha Bharat campaign!

I wonder if Shashi Tharoor is the only sensible man there is in Congress, notwithstanding his “cattle class” comment eons ago… and that little thing about the IPL of the yore. This man, who was MoS in the UPA-II government distinguishes himself from his other Congress mates not only with his elitist background, great looks, a number of achievements through his work with the United Nations, an author but also, and mainly these days, on account of his twittering. Some of his 140 characters have at times outraged a nation (refer to cattle class yet again), taken on his rivals (BJP, etc), but this time it seems the ire seems to be coming from his own kinsmen.

Apparently, Tharoor showed some sporting behaviour in lauding PM Modi’s latest campaign – Swachcha Bharat. And, this did not go down well with Kerala Congress brethren. They criticized him for sounding out a positive note on the PM’s initiative, an initiative that no sane Indian would be against, all because it is Modi government’s initiative.

No wonder our political system refuses to grow up. Mr. Tharoor, you are swimming upstream. The opposition that is provided by your party – which has failed to gather enough votes to be allowed the status of “Opposition” – is so overwhelmingly irrational in its grasp of fundamentals that it thinks its duty is to oppose anything and everything done by the establishment. It does not understand what is national interest. This reminds me of “teams” and “gangs” we used to have in our school days.. which we fortunately outgrew by class 5 or so. Before we became adolescents, please note. That gangmania had us bullying and hurting and alienating others simply because they happened to be acquainted with or collaborated with or just happened to have shared a joke with someone from the opposite camp. It was a strange, childish idea of friendship and loyalty, and I daresay, intolerance.

I am sorry to say your “team”mates are leading your team down a slippery slope of arrogance and intolerance, but more than anything else, your team in being exclusive as a team is hurting national interest. National interest is in having clean and tidy streets, whether the campaign is led by Narendra Modi or Rahul baba, it must be supported. And frankly, it is an ideal that Mahatma Gandhi cultivated. We understand that Congress cannot stand Modi’s guts but it has to differentiate between Modi the man and Modi the PM. If as PM, Modi has begun a campaign that, given his unusual powers of leveraging people’s opinion and influencing behaviour, has a chance of success in giving us a more aware citizenry, a cleaner Bharat, you must understand that it is in India’s favour, in Hindustan’s favour, whichever way you’d like to see it.

If Tharoor is taking a step to laud the PM’s efforts in the direction of a just cause, he is being a politically mature politician. I for one, would like to laud him for taking a constructive path. The cynics, of course, will wonder if this is Tharoor being politically shrewd. That, only time will tell. But for me, yes, Tharoor works. Sir, no need to explain or defend your actions. “Those that understand will not need an explanation, those that ask for explanation, will not understand.”


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