Congress Member of Parliament (MP) from Thiruvananthapuram, Shashi Tharoor on Thursday filed a criminal defamation complaint against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Kerala state President, PS Sreedharan Pillai for statements he made during a press conference earlier this month regarding Tharoor’s wives.
A source close to Shashi Tharoor confirmed to TNM on Thursday that the petition which was accepted by a Judicial Magistrate Court, will take the statements of the MP on March 23. He said that the case has been filed because the statements that were given by the BJP State President was false.
In a press conference on March 5, which was held in the state capital, the BJP state president had said, “Everybody is asking how the three wives of the Congress candidate in Thiruvananthapuram died. But neither BJP nor I wish to ask that question.”
According to Tharoor's complaint, Sreedharan Pillai stated that Tharoor’s second wife was a native of Adoor in Pattanamthitta district and the niece of lawyer Madhusoodanan Nair. Sreedharan Pillai, during his press conference, allegedly went on to say that this second wife used to approach him regarding legal advice. “I never revealed this before because I did not want to use such incidents as political tools,” added the BJP state president without mentioning Tharoor's name directly.
BJP state president PS Sreedharan Pillai
Later when the media questioned Sreedharan Pillai as to whether Tharoor’s three wives had passed away, Pillai said that two of them had passed away and one of them divorced the Congress MP.
Shashi Tharoor was first married to Tilottama Mukherjee, who was a professor of Humanities at the New York University. Later he married, Christa Giles, a Canadian diplomat who was working for the United Nations. In this case, Sreedharan Pillai’s claims about Tharoor’s second wife being a native of Adoor are false and malicious, says Tharoor.
In August 2010, Shashi Tharoor married Sunanda Pushkar in his ancestral home in Palakkad.
However on January 17, 2014, Sunanda was found dead in her room in hotel Leela Palace in New Delhi under mysterious circumstances. The case regarding this is still going on.
Speaking during a Manorama event, Tharoor said, "The state president of the BJP, Sreedharan Pillai, went so far as to invent an imaginary marriage to an imaginary person whom I have never met from a place I have never been to with the name of a father-in-law or someone whom I have never come across and claimed that I had driven her to suicide."