Congress’ Kerala unit sees red over Shashi Tharoor’s Modi praise, party to seek explanation

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Updated: August 27, 2019 3:09:28 PM

Tharoor had supported the stance of two other party leaders -- Jairam Ramesh and Abhishek Manu Singhvi -- that demonising PM Modi all the time would not work. Since then, he is facing the ire of his own party friends from Kerala.

Shashi TharoorCongress leader slam Shashi Tharoor for praising PM Narendra Modi.

Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor is facing a barrage of criticism from his own party leaders for praising Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s good work. Kerala Congress president Mullappally Ramachandran on Tuesday said that Tharoor’s remarks are against the interests of the party. He said that the party will seek an explanation from Tharoor.

“We will seek an explanation from Shashi Tharoor for praising Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The future course of action will be decided based on his explanation,” Ramachandran told reporters in Kannur. Tharoor is a Lok Sabha MP from Thiruvananthapuram.

Tharoor had supported the stance of two other party leaders — Jairam Ramesh and Abhishek Manu Singhvi — that demonising PM Modi all the time would not work. Since then, he is facing the ire of his own party friends from Kerala.

“I have argued for six years now that Narendra Modi should be praised whenever he says or does the right thing, which would add credibility to our criticisms whenever he errs. I welcome others in opposition coming around to a view for which I was excoriated at the time,” Tharoor had said in a tweet on Friday.

Earlier, speaking at a book launch on Thursday, Jairam Ramesh had said it was “time we recognise Prime Minister Modi’s work and what he did between 2014 and 2019 due to which he was voted back to power by over 30% of the electorate.” Modi, Ramesh said, spoke a language that connected him with the people.

Later, Singhvi supported Ramesh’s remark on Twitter. “Always said demonising Modi is wrong. Not only is he the Prime Minister of the nation, a one way opposition actually helps him. Acts are always good, bad and indifferent — they must be judged issue wise and not person wise. Certainly, Ujjawala scheme is only one among other good deeds. #Jairamramesh,” he wrote.

On Sunday, Ramachandran and Leader of Opposition in Kerala House Ramesh Chennithala had openly criticised Tharoor. A day later, senior Kerala Congress leaders K Muraleedharan, Benny Behanan and TN Prathapan took potshots at the Thiruvananthapuram MP. Some even suggested him to join the BJP.

“Anyone who wished to glorify PM Modi must join the BJP,” Muraleedharan said. Behanan said it was not a Congress MP’s job to praise Modi. “The role of a Congress MP is to oppose the BJP policies and not to glorify Modi,” Behanan, who is also the convenor of the Congress-led UDF in Kerala, said.

Prathapan, in a letter to interim Congress president Sonia Gandhi, asked her to rein in leaders who were glorifying Modi.

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