Thiruvananthapuram: Congress leader and Thiruvananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor on Thursday filed sworn statements in the chief judicial magistrate court against two top BJP leaders, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and state BJP president P S Sreedharan Pillai.
The first one is related to the defamation suit filed against the Union minister for law and justice. It was during a press conference in October 2018 that the Union minister had given Shashi Tharoor a qualification that the MP has now strongly objected to. The minister began a sentence saying: “Shashi Tharoor who is accused in a murder case...”
“He falsely and without any basis accused me of being a murder accused. He said it twice and posted it on social media as well. My lawyers wrote to him and told him that he can withdraw these words and apologise. But he refuses to withdraw them. So now I have been left with no choice but to go to the court and demand satisfaction because there is no basis, no murder case, in the tragic death of my wife and there is no accused in a murder case, certainly not me. He has no business speaking like this,” Tharoor said on the sidelines of a programme organised by Manoramaonline here on Thursday.
“It is usual for BJP leaders to go around spreading lies about their political opponents but when the Union law minister does this it has to be taken seriously,” Tharoor said.
The second case, as Tharoor puts it, “is another irresponsible statement by a BJP leader”. “The state president of the BJP, Sreedharan Pillai, went so far as to invent an imaginary marriage to an imaginary person whom I have never met from a place I have never been to with the name of a father-in-law or someone whom I have never come across and claimed that I had driven her to suicide,” Tharoor said.
The writer and MP said that knowing Sreedharan Pillai he had not taken the charge very seriously. “But what is unacceptable is that such tactics are resorted to when they have nothing to speak against me,” Tharoor said. Earlier, Pillai had sought an apology from Tharoor for saying that women who took part in the 'namajapa' protests suffered from Stockholm Syndrome or an affinity for their oppressors. As it turned out, Tharoor had said just the opposite. Tharoor had then demanded an apology. Pillai but did not oblige.
Tharoor on Thursday said that such false stories were part of the BJP's inability to conduct a decent, clean election campaign. “I have worked hard for 10 years in Thiruvananthapuram. They have nothing to point to, they have no track record to speak of. So they have chosen to run a campaign of character assassination based on lies and falsehoods. This must be stopped and the courts are the right place to stop it,” he said.
The two-time Thiruvananthapuram MP was utterly dismissive of Tom Vadakkan who had crossed over to the BJP. “I would say it is a decision of no consequence taken by a person of no consequence,” he said.