Former union minister and Congress candidate from Thiruvananthapuram, Shashi Tharoor, has hit headlines for the words he chose to express his feelings.
The latest one is “squeamishly,” has snowballed into a political controversy.
“Found a lot of enthusiasm at the fish market, even for a squeamishly vegetarian MP!” Tharoor tweeted on Wednesday on his visit to a fish market in his constituency.
A simple google search of “squeamishly” says the word means: “of easily made to feel sick or disgusted.”
However, it also means: “having fastidious moral views; scrupulous.”
The Left parties, his main contenders in the state capital, read it as Tharoor felt like puking when he visited the fish market.
“Most of us in Kerala eat fish. But our MP feels like puking when he sees fish,” wrote a CPIM supporter on Facebook. The constituency has a considerable vote share for the fishermen community.
BJP Kerala also did not miss the situation to criticise him. “it is obvious for an MP to feel squeamish in a fish market who is only used to the scent of expensive attars,” they tweeted.
To cash in on the situation, CPIM released a video of fishermen’s work during the Kerala floods 2018. Their candidate C Divakaran also shared a photo of his visit to a fish market.
Tharoor on Friday responded to the allegations. He said he meant he is a strict vegetarian. “For those Malayali leftist politicians who are currently having difficulty understanding my English!” he tweeted a Malayalam translation of “squeamishly” from Olam.in, an English to Malayalam online dictionary.
The left and right wing activists on social media are still fighting over the meaning of the word in that context.