My wife is priceless, says Tharoor after Modi’s Rs500m remark

TRIVANDRUM — The Twitter page of Shashi Tharoor that remained silent after he resigned from the Manmohan Singh ministry following the IPL controversy, has become alive within 48 hours of his return as Minister of State for Human Resources Development.

By T K Devasia

Published: Wed 31 Oct 2012, 9:14 PM

Last updated: Fri 3 Apr 2015, 1:31 PM

Tharoor has made the comeback on Twitter by taking on Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, whom his party chief Sonia Gandhi had sought to ignore when he questioned the huge cost of her treatment abroad.

The online battle started with Tharoor questioning the Twitter-following of the Gujarat chief minister, who is gearing up for another electoral battle in the western state.

Provoked by Tharoor’s comment that although he has a million followers on Twitter, not all of him were his supporters, Modi hit on him calling his wife Sunanda Pushkar “a 500 million girlfriend’. Modi was alluding to the IPL row involving Pushkar.

The allegation that Pushkar got a Rs500 million worth sweet equity in the Kerala IPL team because of his ‘unholy alliance’ with the team led to Tharoor’s resignation as minister of state for external affairs in 2010.

The avid tweeter hit back, saying Modi was incapable of understanding true love. “My wife is worth a lot more than your imaginary 500 million. She is priceless. But you need to be able to love someone to understand that,” Tharoor tweeted.

The online duel between the two has sparked a clash on Twitter between the supporters of Tharoor and Modi. They dug into the past of the two and commented on their future too in their attempt to defend their respective leaders. One of Tharoor’s supporters tweeted: “Narendra Modi abandons his wife in a village and then criticises Shashi Tharoor for standing by his girlfriend.

“And some of us want this man to be prime minister?

A Modi supporter defended his leader by dwelling on the marital record of Tharoor. “Funny to see someone supporting Shashi Tharoor who divorced his wife for Rs500 million girlfriend”, a Modi supporter tweeted.

Tharoor supporters also questioned Modi’s communal track record. One tweeted:

“He has shown no remorse for killing of people in communal riots. “What’s the list of things that we are going to keep aside”?

“And is BJP the only ones who have tainted hands in riots? Sikh riots of ‘84? No one kept that aside when they voted for Congress” — was a Modi supporter’s reply to this.

The newly appointed minister has been lying low on Twitter after some of his tweets triggered controversy. He had come in for vehement criticism when he termed the economy class plane passengers as “cattle class”

Tharoor had apologised then, saying he meant no disrespect to economy travellers but “only to airlines for herding us in like cattle”.

Tharoor’s comeback has enthused his Twitter followers, whose number has swelled to more than 1.5 million.

He has promised to continue his tweeting much to the joy of his followers.

Modi, who aspires to become prime minister when the country goes for next general elections, has been trying to make his presence felt in the social media networks by taking on his critics.

After his charge against Sonia failed to elicit any response from the Congress chief, he has tried to provoke her once again saying “she does not know how to run a kitchen”.

Modi has also not spared Manmohan Singh. He mocked him calling him ‘Maun’ Mohan Singh.

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