A leaked email purportedly written by Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar to minister Shashi Tharoor, to which he had replied, reveals dramatic details of what was going on -- the minister was trying to ward off a besotted woman to save his marriage, while Tarar appears to be reconciling with what possibly was unrequited love, with a stoic sense of closure.
The email, possibly one of her last and written on July 28 2013, reads like a response to Tharoor’s attempt to pull the plug on a “friendship” devouring his marriage.
In her email, which HT could not independently verify, Tarar thanks Tharoor for his “innate decency” and “moral compass”. And in what is a hint of Tarar’s settling for a platonic companionship, she says: “Thank you Shashi...for being in my life, long distance dost sahi.”
Tarar does appear to acknowledge Tharoor’s problems: “I know how much your wife means to you.”
The death of Sunanda in a luxury Delhi hotel on Friday, being likened to India’s ‘Princes Diana’ moment, shows Tharoor was presciently aware of the perils and trying to head off disaster. He replies by saying that people wouldn’t believe that “friendships”, such as theirs, were indeed possible, or that “intellectual companionship” alone could have made them friends.
“In fact Sunanda has asked that we not be in touch any more. Getting her well and reducing stress on her is my major priority right now and I hope you will understand and forgive me if I stop our phone and email exchanges,” he wrote. He also wishes “all 3 of us” could meet some day to end “this misunderstanding”, unaware of the catastrophic turn events were about to take.