Fact Check

How Shashi Tharoor Hurled an ‘Exasperating Farrago’ of False Accusations at PM Modi…

Here is a tweet by Shashi Tharoor, the Congress leader who has been charged with abetment of suicide in the Sunanda Pushkar case.

He juxtaposes two different statements – one by Union Minister for Culture and one by the Prime Minister – and tries to portray that one of the people must be lying.

Mr. Tharoor is deliberately misleading people here.

In a recent interview to Swarajya, he said, “In 2016, at a special ceremony in Washington DC’s Blair House, US returned 200 historic artifacts.”

Is this true? Or as Mr. Tharoor is insinuating, could this be a lie?

Let the reports of those times speak for themselves. Here is the Indian Express.

If Mr. Tharoor prefers an international outlet, here is CNN.

Clearly, Mr. Tharoor’s insinuation against PM Modi falls apart and his tweet comes out looking disingenuous.
Coming to the Culture Minister’s statement in the Lok Sabha, it has been evident that he is talking about ‘antiquities’ in particular, not going to the specific artifacts. So, the Culture Minister and the Prime Minister seem to be speaking about two different topics related to the subject of India’s ancient cultural treasures. So, there is no question of only one of them being right, as Mr. Tharoor tried to portray.
The Culture Minister Dr. Mr. Mahesh Sharma has replied to Mr. Tharoor’s tweet, explaining the difference. All artifacts may not be antiquities but all antiquities are artifacts. Prime Minister Modi was speaking about artifacts and the Culture Minister had given the information about antiquities.
Below are the tweets of the Culture Minister.

This nuance was, perhaps deliberately, overridden by Mr. Tharoor. Because it is hard to believe that the person famous for “exasperating farrago of distortions..” would himself not know the difference artifacts and antiquities.