Union Minister of State for Human Resource Development Shashi Tharoor on Saturday refused to enter into a public debate on the “propriety of political rivals in his constituency using his wife Sunanda Pushkar’s death as a weapon to vilify him before the electorate.”

Answering questions at a function organised here in connection with the release of a book listing the initiatives during his tenure as the Thiruvananthapuram MP, he said: “There is a police inquiry going on. I urge them [his political rivals] to approach the police if they have anything.” Congress MLA K. Muraleedharan, speaking at the same function earlier, had brought up the issue of “low standard campaign” by the Communist Party of India [which had been representing the Left Democratic Front in the elections in this constituency].

He praised Mr. Tharoor’s contributions to the constituency and the manner in which, as the MP, he coordinated with the MLAs representing the Assembly segments in the constituency, irrespective of their political affiliations, to take forward the development aspirations of Thiruvananthapuram. “They have nothing to say against him,” Mr. Muraleedharan said.

Responding to another question, Mr. Tharoor said he, like every other sitting MP, hoped to contest the coming Lok Sabha elections. The decision on this would be of the party high command.