’Shashi Tharoor, in desperation...’: Rajeev Chandrasekhar on defamation notice to Congress MP

Rajeev Chandrasekhar accuses Shashi Tharoor of spreading false information about bribing voters and has sought retraction of allegations and public apology.

Written By Arshdeep kaur
Updated10 Apr 2024
File photo: Union Minister & BJP candidate Rajeev Chandrasekhar with Congress candidate Shashi Tharoor during a function, ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, in Thiruvananthapuram
File photo: Union Minister & BJP candidate Rajeev Chandrasekhar with Congress candidate Shashi Tharoor during a function, ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, in Thiruvananthapuram(PTI)

Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar has sent a legal notice to Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, accusing him of making defamatory statements against him on a TV channel recently. In the notice, Chandrasekhar has sought Tharoor to "immediately withdraw" all the allegations made against him and tender an "unconditional public apology".

Speaking with ANI, the Union Minister said that the Congress leader likely made the allegations “in his desperation”. 

“I think Shashi Tharoor, in his desperation, has flung a lot of allegations at me,” he said. 

Chandrasekhar said Tharoor, in one of the allegations, said that the BJP leader is paying money for votes. “I have said very clearly that, I will not be drawn into this negative type of politics.”

"However, if anybody defames me and attempts to trespass into an area by telling lies about me, I will certainly not be quiet. I will certainly use all the tools under the law to ensure that that person is held accountable," he told ANI.

Also read: After Congress complaint EC directs CBDT to verify assets declared by Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar

The BJP leader also warned of “appropriate criminal and civil proceedings in a competent court of law”, if the Congress MP fails to comply with the conditions of the legal notice within 24 hours.

In the notice, Chandrasekhar has alleged that Tharoor disseminated "patently false information" regarding bribing of key voters and influential figures such as parish priests, among others, by him.

Chandrasekhar is the BJP candidate for Kerala's Thiruvananthapuram. He has been pitched against Congress MP Tharoor in the Lok Sabha elections 2024 scheduled for April 26 in the constituency.

The notice charged that Tharoor's statements were made with an intent to harm Chandrasekhar's reputation and image. “His remarks also disrespected the entire Christian community of Thiruvananthapuram and its leaders, as he had accused them of engaging in cash-for-votes activities,” it added.

Also read: Shashi Tharoor accepts Rajeev Chandrasekhar's challenge for open debate, 'people of Thiruvananthapuram aware…’

The Congress MP's statements were also in violation of the Model Code of Conduct (MCC).

The notice further claimed the statements were also targeted at injuring the BJP leader's election campaign and benefitting Tharoor in the elections.

Also read: Rajeev Chandrasekhar's family assets decline from 65 cr to 36 cr in 5 years; 680 taxable income in FY21-22

It sought Tharoor to "immediately withdraw" all the allegations made against Chandrashekhar on April 6 and tender an unconditional public apology to him in print and electronic media.

In the notice, MoS IT said the Congress MP should "cease, refrain and desist from defaming, harassing, hampering the reputation" of Chandrashekhar in the future.

(With agency inputs)

 

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