shashi tharoor Quotes

Shashi Tharoor Quotes

Birth Date: 1956-03-09 (Friday, March 9th, 1956)

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Quotes

    • 'India is not, as people keep calling it, an underdeveloped country, but rather, in the context of its history and cultural heritage, a highly developed one in an advanced state of decay.' [1]
    • '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.' [2]
    • 'Does NRI (Non-Resident Indian) stand for Not Really Indian or Never Relinquished India? I believe a little of both!' [3]
    • 'What is most important to me is Jawaharlal Nehru's idea of India, India as a pluralist society and polity, an idea which is central to India's survival, which has held now in the four decades after his death and which is all the more in need of defending.' [4]
    • 'Indian nationalism is the nationalism of an idea, the idea of an ever-ever land, emerging from an ancient civilization, sustained by pluralist democracy.' [5]
    • 'We all have multiple identities in India; we are all minorities in India. Our heterogeneity is definitional.' [6]
    • 'No Indian nationalist leader ever needed to say: We have created India; now all we need to do is to create Indians.' [7]
    • 'In building an Indian nation that takes account of the country's true Hindu heritage, we have to return to the pluralism of the national movement.' [8]
    • 'The memories of the first Independence Day may have faded, but the power of that magical moment must never be forgotten.' [8]
    • 'The only possible idea of India is that of a nation greater than the sum of its parts.' [9]
    • 'The idea of India is not based on language, not on geography, not on ethnicity and not on religion. The idea of India is of one land embracing many. You can be many things and one thing: you can be a good Keralite, a good Muslim and a good Indian all at once.' [10]
    • 'Our founding fathers wrote a constitution for a dream. We have given passports to their ideals.' [11]
    • 'If India had a Latin version of the American motto E Pluribus Unum, it would be E Pluribus Pluribum.' [12]
    • 'If America is a melting pot, then to me India is a thali -- a collection of sumptuous dishes in different bowls. Each may not mix with the next, but they combine on your palate to produce a satisfying repast.' [12]
    • 'The pluralism and the linguistic diversity of India is something of which we can truly be proud.' [13]
    • 'Pluralist India must, by definition, tolerate plural expressions of its many identities.' [14]
    • 'India imposes no procrustean exactions on its citizens: you can be many things and one thing.' [15]
    • 'In India we celebrate the commonality of major differences; we are a land of belonging rather than of blood.' [15]
    • 'Ultimately, what matters in determining the validity of a nation is the will of its inhabitants to live and strive together.' [15]
    • 'The pluralism and the linguistic diversity of India is something of which we can truly be proud.' [13]
    • 'This is my story of the India I know, with its biases, selections, omissions, distortions, all mine.... Every Indian must for ever carry with him, in his head and heart, his own history of India.' [16]
    • 'India has been born and reborn scores of times, and it will be reborn again. India is for ever, and India is forever being made.' [16]
    • 'Bureaucracy is simultaneously the most crippling of Indian diseases and the highest of Indian art forms.' [16]
    • 'Like India herself, I am at home in hovels and palaces, Ganapathi, I trundle in bullock-carts and propel myself into space, I read the vedas and quote the laws of cricket. I move to the strains of a morning raga in perfect evening dress.' [16]
    • 'The British had the gall to call Robert Clive 'Clive of India' as if he belonged to the country, when all he really did was to ensure that much of the country belonged to him.' [16]
    • 'How easily we Indians see the several sides to every question! That is what makes us such good bureaucrats, and such poor totalitarians. They say the new international organizations set up by the wonderfully optimistic (if oxymoronic) United Nations are full of highly successful Indian officials with quick, subtle minds and mellifluous tongues, for ever able to understand every global crisis from the point of view of each and every one of the contending parties. That is why they do so well, Ganapathi, in any situation that calls for an instinctive awareness of the subjectivity of truth, the relativity of judgement and the impossibility of action.' [16]
    • 'Even though India has all the attributes of a great power,its most striking asset was actually its soft power.' - Shashi Tharoor at the recently concluded Hindustan Times Leadership Summit in New Delhi.
    • 'India is more than a sum of its contradictions, any truism about India can be contradicted with another truism. There is no fixed stereotype. But even thinking about India makes clear the immensity of the nation-building challenge.' - Shashi Tharoor at the recently concluded PANIIT 2006 in Bombay.
    • 'There is no one way to look at India. There are many Indias. Pluralism is a reality that emerges from the very nature of the country; it is a choice made inevitable by India's geography and reaffirmed by its history. We are all minorities in India.' - Shashi Tharoor at the recently concluded PANIIT 2006 in Bombay.
    • 'The first challenge is that we cannot generalise about India. One of the few generalisations that can safely be made about India is that nothing can be taken for granted about the country.' - Shashi Tharoor at the recently concluded PANIIT 2006 in Bombay.
    • 'I was not blinded by faith, but the encounter was indeed astonishing at several levels. In our private talk, Sai Baba uttered insights about my family and myself that he could not possibly have known....He waved his hand in the air and opened his palm. In it nestled a gold ring with nine embedded stones, a navratan. He slipped it on my finger, remarking, 'See how well it fits. Even a goldsmith would have needed to measure your finger.' [17]
    • 'It was as if he had heard what I wanted,' she said. But a skilled magician can do that, and it would be wrong to see Sai Baba as a conjurer. He has channeled the hopes and energies of his followers into constructive directions, both spiritual and philanthropic.' [17]
    • 'The British are the only people in history crass enough to have made revolutionaries out of Americans.' [16]
    • 'Basic truth about the colonies, Heaslop. Any time there's trouble, you can put it down to books. Too many of the wrong ideas getting into the heads of the wrong sorts of people. If ever the Empire comes to ruin, Heaslop, mark my words, the British publisher will be to blame.' [16]
    • 'The vehicles of human politics seem to run off course, but the site of the accident turns out to have been the intended destination.' [16]
    • 'Freedom of the press is the mortar that binds together the bricks of democracy -- and it is also the open window embedded in those bricks.' -- Speech at the UN's World Press Freedom Day, 3 May 2001
    • 'Of course, we meet to mourn that part of our human family that is missing -- to remember the individuals and tell each other their stories. But we also meet to unearth the lessons we can draw from their lives and their fates.': Shashi Tharoor, Under-Secretary-General, at the UN's Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust, 29 January 2007.
    • 'Just as human beings have an almost infinite power to destroy, they also possess an enormous capacity to learn, to grow and to create.' : Shashi Tharoor, Under-Secretary-General, at the UN's Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust, 29 January 2007.
    • 'The UN is the place to draw up blueprints without borders. It is the one indispensable global organisation in our globalizing world.' ... Shashi Tharoor, DNA India, November 12, 2005
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