Congress distances itself from Shashi Tharoor’s praise of Narendra Modi

Tharoor had praised Modi saying he was looking to turn himself from a "hate figure into an avatar of modernity and progress".

By: Press Trust of India | New Delhi | Updated: June 5, 2014 8:50 pm
Shashi Tharoor has had effusive praise of Prime Minister Narendra Modi but he made it clear he was not his fan. Shashi Tharoor has had effusive praise of Prime Minister Narendra Modi but he made it clear he was not his fan.

Congress Thursday distanced itself from party spokesperson Shashi Tharoor’s effusive praise of Prime Minister Narendra Modi but he made it clear he was not his fan.

“The views expressed by Shashi Tharoor about Modi and the government are his personal views. As a party, it is too early for us to express these views. It is too early to comment on the functioning of the government,” party spokesperson Shobha Oza told reporters.

Her comments came in response to a barrage of questionsa day after Tharoor’s praise appeared in a US news website in which he had among other things remarked that Modi was looking to turn himself from a “hate figure into an avatar of modernity and progress”.

Oza steered clear of questions as to what could be the trigger for Tharoor, an articulate spokesperson,  to praise Modi, who is seen by many in the party as the “most polarising politician” in the independent India.

She also parried questions on whether any action could be taken against Tharoor.

On his part, Tharoor told NDTV that he cannot be called a fan of Modi.  “No, afraid you can’t.

I have been intrigued by the fact that the paraphrases of my piece I have seen in
the Indian media looks like people don’t actually read every word and every nuance,” he said when asked if he could be called a ‘Modi fan’ now after his piece in the website.

Tharoor said his piece very clearly explains that  for a dozen years the Congress party had good reasons to criticise him very severely for the 2002 riots.

But the way he has conducted himself after the election and spoken  from the moment of his victory he “has been amazingly gracious and accommodative” of even those who had not voted for him.

Tharoor was all praise for the language and tone used by Modi and so he thought it would be churlish not to acknowledge it.

“We should acknowledge that this may the evolution of Modi 2.0 but if Modi 1.0 reemerges, then we will robustly oppose him,” he said.

Asked if the Congress party would go with his views, Tharoor said he has not been fired as party spokesperson.  He said the media creates controversies for TRP ratings “but there is actually a coherence and synergy at work” when various spokespersons speak.

When asked whether her views being expressed today are personal or those of the party, Oza, who is also the Mahila Congress chief insisted “whatever views I have expressed are my party’s views.”

Noting that while it is true that Congress will work as a constructive opposition and as a party it wants the government to function well, she wondered “I would like to know what has changed. I have given you an example. Nothing has changed.”

She was referring to her attack on the Prime Minister over his pre-election pitch on women security and the recurring incidents of   persecution of women including rapes and gang rapes in various parts of the country.

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First Published on: June 5, 2014 7:14 pm
  1. B
    Bharatvasi
    Jun 5, 2014 at 2:09 pm
    Who is Shoba Oza ? never heard this name earlier.
    Reply
    1. V
      Venk
      Jun 6, 2014 at 1:10 am
      Despite earlier misgivings about Hindutva extremism, Modi appears to be in complete control, not wasting words unnecessarily or getting carried away on emotional trips. Modi's interactions with stan PM and others have started on a positive note and given the por mandate he enjoys, sincerely hope he is able to bottle some of the devils that have haunted India since independence - corruption, and cution/exploitation of minorities and the poor. India and its 1.2 billion people have a huge potential that will need careful management to generate the social harmony necessary so all feel they have a stake in India and pull together.
      Reply
      1. P
        Pravin Borlepwar
        Jun 6, 2014 at 9:42 am
        What is this..does congress thinks that one should not appraise some one from other party even if he does good work?
        Reply
        1. D
          Dip
          Jun 5, 2014 at 9:08 pm
          These pseudo intellectuals and morally bankrupt people who destro the country by licking feet of Sonia now want to 'Judge' Modi!
          Reply
          1. S
            Sridhara Hiriyannaiah
            Jun 6, 2014 at 4:39 am
            Congress thinks it is their duty to ridicule and critisize everyone else other than his. They refuse to see any good in any one else.
            Reply
            1. I
              Iqbal
              Jun 5, 2014 at 6:46 pm
              I am no Modi fan...but atleast i can tell what has changed... going by media reports... Congress could have leader of opposition post. If that is not enough accommodating and an effort to reach congress then nothing else could be. Compare it with the situation of no Leader of opposition when congress was in majority. Grow Up!!!
              Reply
              1. N
                Nivas Lakshminarasimhan
                Jun 8, 2014 at 6:51 am
                What has changed?? We've a stronger PM now, to whose leadership your party has no answer to... and compared to the last 10years... lesser sycophancy... more energy and optimism!...To Ms Oza n the Congress party... Continue being an ostrich!...
                Reply
                1. D
                  Debunker
                  Jun 6, 2014 at 9:45 pm
                  Mr Tharoor. Get real. Why hang onto a decadent , ossified political party like the Congress ?. It cannot reform, it cannot even change. - So what earthly logic are you using to hang onto this wooden duck ?. - Let go and move over to the side that show an atude to change and good governance for India. Makes sense or not ?. Time to jump ship.
                  Reply
                  1. R
                    Raj Patil
                    Jun 6, 2014 at 12:35 am
                    OF COURSE THEY WILL DISTANCE THEMSELVES FROM ANY PRAISE OF MODI. THEY HAVE BECOME DEVIL SO THEY DON'T LIKE ANYTHING GOOD. THEY LIKE ONLY ONE THING THAT IS HI FAMILY.
                    Reply
                    1. R
                      ramdas
                      Jun 5, 2014 at 3:35 pm
                      So much praise at the start of his tenure, he has long way to go. But modiji has already floored the opposition with his thumping victory.
                      Reply
                      1. R
                        RKRAO
                        Jun 5, 2014 at 7:20 pm
                        Shashi Tharoor wants Modi's help in the death of Sunanda Pushkar. We should be sensitive to Shashi's position.
                        Reply
                        1. J
                          jacob
                          Jun 5, 2014 at 3:27 pm
                          This man is a turncoat with chameleon like qualities. Conggis should have him thrown out.
                          Reply
                          1. C
                            Citizen
                            Jun 5, 2014 at 11:19 pm
                            This party never had the courage to accept the truth and constructive criticism except praise of the dynasty with utmost loyalty like the olden days maharaja durbars of paid Vndhimagatalu. The result is the present situation where even opposition status is doubtful Hope these guys would learn to cultivate second line of leaders instead of many unworthy sycophants Jaihind
                            Reply
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