In the wake of a controversy stemming from a speech made at a pro-Palestine rally, Shashi Tharoor, a Congress Member of Parliament, has been removed from an upcoming Palestine solidarity event by the Mahal Empowerment Mission (MEM), a Muslim Jamaath body. The decision came after Tharoor’s statement at a rally organized by the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), an ally of the Congress party, where he equated the October 7 attack by Hamas on Israel with a terrorist strike.
Tharoor’s remarks drew sharp criticism, with M Swaraj, a leader of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) or CPI(M), stating, “Tharoor is not a man who does not know the meaning of words. He is also not a person who was unaware that history had not begun on October 7.” The MEM President, Shajahan Sreekaryam, confirmed that they had communicated their decision to remove Tharoor from the program to the press agency PTI.
The IUML event took place in Kozhikode, Kerala, with the aim of condemning the reported indiscriminate killings of civilians, including women and children, in Gaza. Tharoor attended the rally as a chief guest.
While emphasizing the urgent need to end the Israel-Palestine conflict, the Congress MP’s statement condemning the attack by Hamas on Israel as an “act of terror” sparked controversy.
In response to the backlash, Tharoor expressed his bewilderment, noting that only 25 seconds of his 32-minute speech had been highlighted to attack him. He stated, “If that’s all it takes to negate my support for the human rights of the Palestinian people, then I have nothing more to say.” Tharoor also issued a clarification, reiterating his long-standing support for the people of Palestine and disagreeing with the interpretation of his words in isolation from his complete speech at the IUML rally.
Sources By Agencies