Former Under General Secretary to the UN and Congress MP from Kerala, Shashi Tharoor in a strong statement has questioned the legacy of one of UK’s biggest statesmen and Prime Minister Winston Churchill.
Tharoor who has launched a sting of attack on Britain’s colonial legacy through his new book, ‘Inglorious Empire’ said the former British PM should be remembered along with the prominent dictators of the twentieth century.
Speaking at the London launch of his book, which deals with the atrocities committed by Britishers in India, Tharoor said Churchill, who was the Prime Minister at the time was responsible for the Bengal famine of 1943, arguably the worst genocide in human history.
An estimated over 4 million people died from starvation and malnutrition during a famine in Bengal, while Britain exported huge amounts of food from India, including 70,000 tonnes of rice in the same year.
This is what Churchill had to say about the incident.
“I hate Indians. They are a beastly people with a beastly religion. The famine was their own fault for breeding like rabbits.”
“This is the man who the British insist on hailing as some apostle of freedom and democracy,” the author said of Churchill at a launch of his book.
“When to my mind he is really one of the more evil rulers of the 20th century only fit to stand in the company of the likes of Hitler, Mao and Stalin”, The Independent quoted Tharoor as saying.
“Churchill has as much blood on his hands as Hitler does,” Tharoor said adding, “Particularly the decisions that he personally signed off during The Bengal Famine when 4.3 million people died because of the decisions he took or endorsed.”
The two-time Congress MP and former minister of state for Human Resource said even after British officers informed Churchill about the situation caused by his policy, the latter’s reply was, “Why hasn’t Gandhi died yet?”
Tharoor though his new book has raised some serious questions to the British, something that not many have been able to do so far.
Tharoor has become so popular in India, that someone launched a petition to make Tharoor the Prime Ministerial candidate of Congress in 2019, an appeal which the MP appreciated, but denied to take up.