Despite being snubbed by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Congress MP and former minister Shashi Tharoor has held talks with several UN agencies and its officials at Geneva. Tharoor, who represents Thiruvananthapuram constituency, is in Geneva to pay his last respects to former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who died on 18 August.
Tharoor has said that Kerala government could seek assistance from the UN by organising an international reconstruction conference, if needed, reported Malayalam daily Malayala Manorama.
In a statement at the end of his visit, the former minister said the state government’s approach could depend on the quantum of long term reconstruction assistance from the Centre and an international conference will help it get global assistance. The state could also seek some 20 million anti-cholera vaccine from the UN, he said adding that the global body was ready to offer diagnostic kits to test water, water filters and monitor those affected by non-communicable diseases.
Tharoor, who had worked as an under secretary general at the UN, claimed that he discussed his visit with Kerala Chief Minister (CM) Vijayan and had passed on the recommendations. However, on Tuesday (21 August), the Kerala CM said that the former minister was not an emissary of the Kerala government, while Vijayan’s office also clarified the same.
Tharoor, who has been extended bail in a case relating to his wife Sunanda Pushkar’s death, went to Geneva after getting the court’s permission to pay his last respects to Annan.