Quotes by Shashi Tharoor


Shashi Tharoor (born 9 March 1956) is an Indian politician and a former diplomat who is currently serving as Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha from Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala since 2009. He also currently serves as Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on External Affairs. He was previously Minister of State in the Government of India for External Affairs (2009–2010) and Human Resource Development (2012–2014). Tharoor is also an acclaimed writer, having authored 15 bestselling works of fiction and non-fiction since 1981, all of which are centred on India and its history, culture, film, politics, society, foreign policy, and more. Tharoor is a globally recognised speaker on India’s economics and politics, as well as on freedom of the press, human rights, Indian culture, and international affairs.

“India shaped my mind, anchored my identity, influenced my beliefs, and made me who I am. … India matters to me and I would like to matter to India.”
― Shashi Tharoor.

 

“India is not, as people keep saying, an underdeveloped country, but rather, in the context of its history and cultural heritage, a highly developed one in an advanced state of decay.”
― Shashi Tharoor.

 

“In India we celebrate the commonality of major differences; we are a land of belonging rather than of blood.”
― Shashi Tharoor.

 

“If you believe in truth and cared enough to obtain it, you had to be prepared actively to suffer for it.”
― Shashi Tharoor.

 

“Everything is recycled in India, even dreams.”

― Shashi Tharoor.

 

“Pluralist India must, by definition, tolerate plural expressions of its many identities.”

– Shashi Tharoor.

“India has been born and reborn scores of times, and it will be reborn again. India is forever, and India is forever being made.” – Shashi Tharoor.

“We all have multiple identities in India; we are all minorities in India. Our heterogeneity is definitional.”

– Shashi Tharoor.

“It’s not the side of the bigger army that wins, it’s the country that tells a better story.” – Shashi Tharoor.

“Today, people in Silicon Valley and elsewhere speak of Indian Institutes of Technology with the same reverence they used to accord to MIT. This can sometimes have unintended consequences. I had a friend, a history major like me, who was accosted at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, by an anxiously perspiring European saying, “You’re Indian, you’re Indian! Can you help me fix my laptop?”

– Shashi Tharoor.

“India is the nationalism of an idea. It’s the idea of an ever-ever-land, emerging from an ancient civilization, united by a shared history, but sustained, above all, by pluralist democracy.That is a 21st-century story as well as an ancient one. And it’s the nationalism of an idea that essentially says you can endure differences of caste, creed, color, culture, cuisine, custom and costume, consonant, for that matter, and still rally around a consensus. And the consensus is of a very simple principle, that in a diverse plural democracy like India you don’t really have to agree on everything all the time, so long as you agree on the ground rules of how you will disagree. The great success story of India, a country that so many learned scholars and journalists assumed would disintegrate, in the ’50s and ’60s, is that it managed to maintain consensus on how to survive without consensus.”

– Shashi Tharoor.

“Somebody said we are super poor, and we are also super power. We can’t really be both of those. We have to overcome our poverty.” – Shashi Tharoor.

“My parents were astonishing for Indian parents, in the amount of freedom they left me. I had the misfortune of being good at studies – I say this without any false modesty – particularly in the Indian school system. Those who were good at taking exams tend to do well, and it doesn’t necessarily imply that they have fine minds. But my parents had the typical Indian middle-class ambitions for me and I kept coming first in science and they wanted me to be a doctor or an engineer. Well, I hated science. I only became first in the subject because I knew how to take exams. So at the end of the eighth grade when you stream into different fields, I said I would not do science. I wanted to do humanities, and to the astonishment of many of my friends, my parents said, “Fine, you should study what you want to study.”

– Shashi Tharoor

 

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Quotes by Shashi Tharoor

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