Coming out against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Lok Sabha MP Shashi Tharoor today said people had “made the mistake” of taking his liberal pronouncements during Lok Sabha polls at face value even as he asserted that Congress was the “best repository” of liberal values in India.
Taking a dig at Modi, he added that those who had hoped for a liberal revival under him are deeply disillusioned now.
Modi’s liberal slogans during Lok Sabha elections was unaccompanied by any serious plan for the implementation of the same, charged Tharoor.
Arguing that Congress party is the best repository in the country of liberal values, Tharoor said there was a fundamental contradiction in Modi’s liberal election slogans because he was making statements while riding on the back of a profoundly “illiberal political movement”.
“Some, including the late Raju, (SV Raju of Swatantra Party) made the mistake of taking Modi’s liberal campaign pronouncements at face value.
“But Modi’s slogans were unaccompanied by any serious plan to implement them and (these were) crippled by the fundamental contradiction that Modi was making liberal statements while riding on the back of a profoundly illiberal political movement,” Tharoor said at an event here.
He further claimed that “those who saw the hope of a liberal revival under Mr Modi are deeply disillusioned today”.
The Thiruvananthapuram MP argued that Congress is the best repository in the country of liberal values which supports free expression, free thought, free institutions, free markets, political democracy, social justice and equity.
“Liberalism in India has to take into account the socio- economic realities of the country, the magic of the market will not appeal to those who cannot afford to enter the marketplace,” he said.
He added that rather than pursue the “chimera” of creating a political party to embody liberalism, Indian liberals should seek to infuse liberal values and principles into all political parties and promote liberalism in the mainstream of Indian politics.