Shashi Tharoor, minister atwitter

Should government ministers use Twitter to keep the public informed of their daily activities? That’s aShashi-tharoor question being debated in India, thanks to new Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor, who reportedly is the first Indian minister to actively use Twitter.

In case you aren’t one of his growing legion of followers, here’s just a sampling of his recent tweets:

First day in Parliament. Still can’t believe I made it to Delhi! Remind me not to fly Kingfisher again.
7:05 AM May 19th from TwitterBerry

Have given 13 interviews in 3 languages and 2 more TV shows pending. A little overwhelmed by the media scum.
3:31 PM May 19th from TwitterBerry

Scrum. I meant, scrum.
3:32 PM May 19th from TwitterBerry

@koshy no, I won't be tweeting in Malayalam.
6:54 PM May 19th from TwitterBerry

@sreenivasan I've made 500 campaign speeches in Malayalam, given 150+ interviews in Malayalam, cursed my ex-wife in Malayalam!
6:59 PM May 19th from TwitterBerry

@verghese yes, I do regret the last part. I should have done it in French.
7:02 PM May 19th from TwitterBerry

Lunch with Vijay Amritraj, tennis ace and old friend. Discussed Wimbledon, Fed vs. Nad.
2:34 PM May 20th from TwitterBerry

@bhupathi yes, I’m more of a “Go Fed” guy than a “Go Nad” guy.
2:43 PM May 20th from TwitterBerry

Office computer still won’t work  … too many bugs. Clerk used a spray and 100 roaches ran out!
10:22 AM May 24th from TwitterBerry

First meeting with MEA Minister SM Krishna, an eminent figure in Indian politics. I will be handling mainly Africa & Arab world (so Dearborn, Mich., too).
11:47 AM Jun 1st from Web

Incessant stream of political visitors this morning, all well-meaning, kind & supportive. But politics isn’t easy for those who value privacy!
4:40 PM Jun 2nd from TwitterBerry

Just used my sparkling new toilet again. Flushes well.
4:45 PM Jun 2nd from TwitterBerry

@cherian no, only for ministers. MPs get the low-flow model.
4:48 PM Jun 2nd from TwitterBerry

The toughest part of political life is to get work done while managing to be accessible to evry voter who wants to meet/spk.
5:30 PM Jun 2nd from TwitterBerry

@nilanjana the lookalikes help, but it’s still tough.
5:31 PM Jun 2nd from TwitterBerry

@chitra the cutouts haven’t arrived yet.
5:32 PM Jun 2nd from TwitterBerry

Delhi political social circuit has come to life – 3 dinner invites a day. Too much eating, not enough tweeting.
3:21 PM Jun 3rd from TwitterBerry

@alok there will be nothing on twitter that I can't say publicly. Obviously no state secrets. Nor will i conduct diplomacy thru twitter!
3:30 PM Jun 3rd from TwitterBerry

@ahmadinejad yes, it's a tricky issue. BO won't be happy. let's talk more when I come to Tehran.
3:32 PM Jun 3rd from TwitterBerry

@renuka book will be published in 2010. A collection of my tweets. Tentative title: "Meet, Eat and Tweet: Using Twitter to Keep the Public Tharoorly Uninformed.”
9:35 PM Jun 5th from TwitterBerry

If you enjoyed this piece, you'll love Melvin's novel Bala Takes the Plunge, available in North America through Amazon.com and McNallyRobinson.com You can also find it at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. A number of readers have written reviews of the novel. An excerpt of the novel can be read here.

Comments

  1. jigruksh says:

    good one, Melvin… 🙂

  2. Nice dig, Melvin! I’m sure the present cabinet is very tech savvy give its average age.
    I follow Arnie on Twitter @ http://twitter.com/Schwarzenegger. Will make sure to follow Tharoor as well.

  3. haha!
    Nice one! For awhile I thought it was for real

  4. Hilarious! I so hope Tharoor has this sense of humor. His face though, looks like he’s uptight.

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