If you were a reporter covering the Shiv Sena in 2006, the place to be was a nondescript restaurant located midway between party offices and those of Bal Thackeray’s nephew Raj, who rebelled and formed a new party after a fall-out with his uncle.
At this hole-in-the-wall eatery, party workers from both sides would let it all out — the vitriol would flow freely against Raj, the Thackerays and the Congress party. A lot of these barbs were never repeated outside those four walls, but some of that vitriol certainly seeped into the public speeches of their leaders.
Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi is certainly taking over from the Thackerays when it comes to handing out insults — he’s been targeting almost every single opponent in his election campaign.
On Monday, he called Shashi Tharoor’s wife Sunanda a “50-crore girlfriend” referring to the IPL scandal, a comment that sparked a media furor and a spate of jokes on Twitter.
Tharoor responded the way any former diplomat would, telling Modi on Twitter that his wife was “priceless” and worth much more than his “imaginary 50 crore”.