Interesting account of how Shashi Tharoor’s candidacy was backed by the Indian Govt. Also sad because its a person’s parochial credentials as opposed to real credentials (which Tharoor genuinely has) that swayed the Govt. to make the decision!
India had no intention of supporting an Indian candidate for the post till his friends got going, thus claims the grapevine in Delhi. They apparently pulled strings that go right to the top — 10, Janpath (Congress party president Sonia Gandhi’s home in New Delhi) and the Prime Minister’s Office.
It was also a coup pulled off by members of the Indian Foreign Service family who have been working at it for more than a year.Among those who worked for Dr Tharoor’s candidature were Ramu Damodaran (remember he also read news on Doordarshan at one time?), who served as then prime minister P V Narasimha Rao’s private secretary till he moved to the United Nations in the mid-1990s where he has been since. His father A K Damodaran, a former ambassador to Sweden, too has connections to 10, Janpath.
Also playing a key role, so claims the Delhi grapevine, was another influential retired ambassador, rediff.com columnist T P Sreenivasan.
In the end, everybody who is anybody in Kerala spoke for Dr Tharoor with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi — former Kerala chief ministers K Karunakaran, A K Antony and Oomen Chandy, Union Ministers Vayalar Ravi and E Ahamed and the most important of them all, National Security Adviser M K Narayanan. The NSA is close to both Sonia Gandhi and Dr Singh.
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