Tharoorianism – The ability to consistently use the most confoundingly complex words in daily use.

Shashi Tharoor has made the news for a variety of different reasons over the years, and each time, we’ve all learned something about politics, India, our heritage and ourselves – mostly for the better. 

Here are a few times he really proved he’s irreplaceable. 

1. When he had the coolest reply to getting a marriage proposal at Delhi Pride parade

During the recent Delhi Pride Parade, this guy carried a placard asking Mr. Tharoor to marry him.

And it’s not only him 😬 #pride2017 #prideparade #dqp #loveislove #delhiqueerpride #love

A post shared by Tarun Bora (@paharimonk) on

It came to the attention of Tharoor, who shot off one of his signature replies.

It’s the little things like these that’s really endeared him to the general public.

2. When recalling how he wasn’t allowed into his sister’s wedding reception because he was wearing a kurta

He told NDTV about an incident that was equal parts sad and funny, just because of how preposterous the whole situation was.

“I was denied entry to my own sister’s wedding reception at the Madras Gymkhana in 1982 because I was wearing an expensive silk kurta which, of course, didn’t have a collar: a sloppier T-shirt, which did, would have been acceptable to the custodians of the club’s peculiar standards. On another occasion, I had to tuck my kurta into my pants since the club in question only permitted ‘tucked-in shirts'”.

His reflections on the bias that Indian-wear faces over Western wear started a debate that managed to change at least a few minds.


3. When he had this highly enlightening reply to a Pakistani girl’s question on Kashmir

During a Q&A session, a student from Pakistan asked if India would also be viewed as an ‘inglorious empire’ for occupying Kashmir against the wishes of many resident Kashmiris. Tharoor had an extremely illuminating answer to this difficult question, explaining the futility of using religion as the foundation for building a nation, which was what led to the formation of Pakistan in the first place.

4. When he explained that Britain owes reparations for its atrocities in India

This speech has become the stuff of legend. Bold, witty, brutal and highly informative, Tharoor swept the floor and left no doubt in the minds of watchers in regard to just how terribly British colonialism affected India.

5. When he set the record straight about the ‘positive aspects’ of British rule in India

While appearing on ABC TV’s Q&A for a panel discussion on politics and the world, an audience member asked a valid questions that’s been employed by colonial non-apologists frequently.

Tharoor was having none of it however, and initiated a factually jarring shutdown of any positive impact colonialism might have had.

Watch the video below, the takedown starts at 44.45

6. When he introduced Indians to the poshest word of 2017

This tweet caused a farrago of its own, and that’s making my brain hurt.

7. When he posted the ‘most secular picture ever’

Tharoor is known for his hatred of communalism, and this picture really proves it.

Sitting at the Y.M.C.A (Young Men’s Christian Association – read Christian) in Kerala, Tharoor is talking to a swami in saffron, while 3 Muslim men sit to his right. If this isn’t the most secular picture ever, I don’t know what is.

8. When he explained exactly what makes India a business strength to be reckoned with

While speaking at a conference in Singapore on the topic of emerging business trends: China versus India, the moderator asked,

“To what extent do caste and communal differences hinder India from realising its true potential? Does the fact that China is potentially more homogeneous than India give China a very strong edge?”

A tough, and extremely wide-arching question, Tharoor nevertheless managed to give one of his most well thought out responses.

“A democracy like India works on the fundamental principle, that China doesn’t have, is that you don’t need to agree all the time, so long as you agree on the ground rules on how you’ll disagree. So our success is that we manage to maintain consensus on how to manage without consensus.”

9. When he took a sly dig at Nitish Kumar’s innumerable U-turns

Tharoor didn’t directly say that the tweet below was aimed at Nitish Kumar. Considering it came just a day after Nitish switched alliances to BJP yet again and proved that loyalty for him meant squat, it was pretty apparent who Tharoor’s tweet was aimed at.

10. When he explained why the entire Tanmay Bhat Snapchat fiasco was a bunch of bollocks

After comedian Tanmay Bhat did some silly Snapchat thingamajigs using Lata Mangeshkar and Tendulkar filters, the dumbest bits of India were up in arms over some imaginary form of disrespect. Shashi rightly pointed out that, “cracking a bad joke is not against the law; it is bad taste at the most. Let’s not deify human beings as being above and beyond criticism, cartoons or jokes.”

Read the full post below.

11. When he shared a petition to get an apology from the British to the Indian people

Tharoor shared a petition started by his nephew Avinash Tharoor, which required 100,000 signatures for it to be debated in the UK Parliament. Tharoor has previously called out the Great British empire for its ‘historical amnesia’ and their absolute indifference to the damage they caused to their colonies.


Keep on keepin’ on, Mr. Tharoor!