In politics, even a leisure trip must be planned carefully. If not, it could trigger plenty of speculation. Karti Chidambaram was a ‘victim’ of one such mistimed tour, who chose the wrong place at the wrong time last week. Of all the places, the former Union Finance Minister’s son chose Coorg to rest. As soon as the media caught wind of Chidambaram junior cooling his heels in the rural hinterland of Karnataka, rumour mills started spinning overtime, about him meeting the rebel AIADMK MLAs holidaying there. The unavailability of Karti, as well as his PR managers even over phone, kept the media guessing till early Saturday evening, when a different set of reports emerged from there about Karti being taken to a private hospital in Coorg after he complained of some discomfort. Understandably, the unconfirmed reports whipped the media frenzy, as some in the Chidambaram camp even speculated that the former union minister had rushed to Bengaluru from New Delhi. One TNCC functionary even said that a reportedly ill Karti was airlifted from Mysuru to Bengaluru, from where he was brought to Chennai. The unending saga of rumour-mongering in a single day ended only late in the evening, after Karti tweeted “Good luck boys” wishing Indian players well in the Davis cup. It was followed by another tweet, ‘Quote of the day: The report of my death was an exaggeration -Mark Twain.” From alliance to illness, it was a day of gossip for Chidambarams, all due to a simple, mistimed picnic.
— K Karthikeyan, Chennai