Sunday, April 18, 2010

Thieving Tharoor Gets His Due

(Warning:- Indian Politics)

My judgement about Shashi Tharoor is vindicated. The philandering, corrupt, "new hope" has been kicked out of the Cabinet for his clumsy attempt to reward his girlfriend with a 15 million dollar stake in an IPL team. His fanboi legion is out there on the internetz banging away with such gems like " What if he is corrupt? Others are even more corrupt" and "start a new party and you will be Prime Minister".

Please Mr T, do try.

His NRI following, who choose not to live in India, but want to have a say in its politics, must be heart broken. I mean, I can understand the appeal- Spend your productive years in the West and when the time comes to retire persuade a party to give you a parliament seat and after a 3 week campaign in a constituency you've never seen before and not even speaking the language of your constituents, become Member of Parliament and then immediately a minister with zero experience as a politician or an MP, thus setting you free to "contribute" to India, enriching your girlfriend by millions of dollars - what's not to like? It is the ultimate NRI fantasy.

Like all fantasies projected onto reality it does work once in a while, and invariably ends disastrously.

As MJ Akbar said in his blog entry

"Tharoor is writhing between a mistake and a misfortune. His mistake was to gatecrash a party without an invitation. He thought he could buy entry with Dubai and Gujarat money and spin out collateral political benefits by name-association with Kochi. He leapt to take the political credit when Kochi won the franchise. He is alleged to have taken financial rewards more surreptitiously. His friend Sunanda Pushkar's feeble claim that she is not a proxy is silly. You do not get sweat equity in perpetuity, which means free and forever, with a starting value of Rs 70 crore, for being an unknown executive of a Dubai company. There hasn't been a case of "cheque-payment culpability" of this order since the transactions that ended the chief ministership of A R Antulay in 1981. Nearly 30 years ago, Congress inexplicably tried to defend the indefensible before dumping Antulay so hard it virtually broke the warhorse's back. Mystery repeats itself.

Tharoor's misfortune was to encounter an adversary who could out-Twitter him at high noon in the gunfight at IPL corral. Tharoor and Lalit Modi have more in common than sharp suits, sharp wits and a dogged commitment to the television cameras. Having achieved so much through effective use of the media, they were convinced their favourite weapon remained the best option. They went to war through the media. A veteran like Sharad Pawar would have told them, had they but asked that children in glasshouse nurseries shouldn't throw stones.

Modi has one advantage over Tharoor; he is in the private sector. His accountability is to fiscal laws. Tharoor affects the image of the Congress at a time when the party cannot afford a greasy controversy. Tharoor is the first Congress minister in the Sonia Gandhi-Manmohan Singh government to be publicly pilloried for alleged corruption."

I wouldn't put it past His Sliminess to wriggle his way back into some position of power. But for now, Good Riddance.

Anyway he promised to make Trivandrum a "world class city" if he got elected. As Member of Parliament he can still work towards that. I supect he won't get a chance next time ;-). It would help if he knew some people in his constituency and their problems and/or spoke the language. Oh well now he has the time for all that. We'll wait and watch.

Mood: Delighted.

Some advice for Mr Tharoor: You have about 3 friends in the Congress Party hierarchy. Fortunately for you one of them is the Prime Minister. Get Dr Singh to have a pliable CBI officer do an "investigation" and then declare you innocent. Hey Presto get your ministry back and then we can figure out how to make 70 crores back(with interest). It would help if you could keep your mouth shut and not tweet your usual inanities while all this is going on. Good Luck!

Meanwhile (non political) temperatures are soaring in Delhi. 52 degrees centigrade the other day. Any more and people will burst into flame.

PS: I don't have access to the internet these days ( I had to make a special effort for this post - the taste of "I told you so" is too sweet ) so if any of the ex-minister's fanboys (yeah you "ppl" or "tweeple" or whatever you morons call yourself these days) want to leave nasty anonymous comments like the last time I wrote about Saint Tharoor, you'll have to wait till I get back online (the middle of May, more or less).