Trouble is brewing over Shashi Tharoor’s tongue-in-cheek twitter remark to a question by journalist Kanchan Gupta [associate editor, the Pioneer] asked on September 14 2009, 11:57 PM on Twitter. The journalist had asked him if Tharoor will be travelling by cattle class in his next visit to Kerela! For the uninitiated [and this may include the Congress High Command] the ‘Cattle class’ is an internationally popular slang for the standard class, lowest class or the Economy class. Here is a snapshot of the controversial query from twitter:
Shashi Tharoor replied, “absolutely, in cattle class out of solidarity with all our holy cows!” Here is a snapshot of the reply! 🙂
Now what’s wrong with that?! In my humble opinion anybody with good command of the English language, idioms and phrases will jump to give such a reply and that includes a minister! You say cattle and a witty person is most likely to think of the phrase ‘sacred cow!’ It’s more likely to happen when you are writing at a micro-blogging site like Twitter where you have to sum up your speech in 140 characters or less! I think Tharoor gave a good reply to the query. He spoke so much in so little. Kanchan Gupta is enjoying it and says the Congress has misunderstood the comment and thinks Tharoor is “referring to a certain person as cow!”
This is humour but the Congress party is unable to understand it. Nothing less nothing more! It is quite acceptable and it has nothing to do with hurting political sensibilities or anything like that. It is humour! Appreciate it or ignore it! But the congress is doing neither and the “high command will decide” says the Congress spokesperson Jayanti Natarajan.
Shashi Tharoor and Kanchan Gupta were having a banter over the austerity issue. The journalist had asked him if he would be “flying cattle class to Ghana or Liberia?”
Kanchan also writes this in reply to a tweet suggesting ‘austerity measures’ for Tharoor when he visits Noida sector 18:
The following snapshot is also from the Twitter profile of Kanchan Gupta:
The journalist exclaims:
Catch the latest on Shashi Tharoor’s twitter profile (which has presently 1,60,000 followers) and Kanchan Gupta’s twitter profile. Also read Bachi Karkaria [It’s austerity, stupid] and Rajesh Kalra’s ‘Nothing wrong with Tharoor’s Tweet‘ on the TOI blogs. You may also see my report of Shashi Tharoor’s visit to the JNU campus.
Tharoor Says sorry in solidarity with the holy cows
Update 18 September 2009 10:20 am. Click here to read part 2 of this report. Shashi Tharoor says sorry and regrets our lack of ability to appreciate humour.
Published at 11:47 PM IST 16 September 2009; Copyrighted to Vikas Gupta, JNU.