In a sudden move, Parakala Prabhakar, the Communications Advisor to the Andhra Pradesh government, resigned from his post on Tuesday.
Parakala Prabhakar is the husband of Union Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, and has been a target of the opposition parties in Andhra ever since the TDP broke up with the BJP.
Prabhakar’s resignation letter to the Chief Minister said, “For the past few days, a few opposition leaders are pointing fingers at me and questioning why you have been accommodating me, even as you are fighting with the BJP and the Union government.”
Opposition parties including the YSRCP have repeatedly pointed out that Prabhakar continued to hold his position, even as his wife, Nirmala Sitharaman, held the post of Defence Minister in the NDA government, after the ruling TDP parted ways with BJP.
"They are trying to rake up doubts on the struggle that you are leading against the Union government. They are using my existence in the government to mock your commitment towards the state. When some unknown leaders made such statements, my friends asked me not to bother about it. However, today, a responsible opposition leaders like YSRCP chief Jaganmohan Reddy, too, has raised the same issue, and reduced your struggle and commitment. That hurt me a lot," he added.
Parakala Prabhakar went on to add, “Claims are being made that because my family member belongs to another party, and has different political views, I might compromise on the state’s interest. These rumours have been manufactured by some people, which have deeply hurt me.”
“Mature people will have their own political opinions and their relationship will not come in the way (of their work). It’s a pity that the opposition parties do not have minimum common sense. I would not want that to tarnish the image of the government or this agitation,” Parakala said.
Parakala further said: "My wish is that there should not a black mark on your commitment and Dharmaporata Deeksha. I do not want you or your government to be disrespected."
"Yesterday, as I brought this matter to your notice, you said that you have complete trust in me, told me not to bother about the words uttered by mannerless people for vested interests, that reflects how broad-minded you are."
"I have thought a lot regarding this matter. No one should be using my name and my family's name to sling mud at you or your government."
Parakala also said that he didn't want to be a hindrance to state's interests.
Stating that Chandrababu Naidu had repeatedly placed trust in him, he also said that he doesn't want his name and his family's name to be used in this manner. He also said that he will soon meet the Chief Minister personally over the issue.\
The TDP pulled out of the central government and BJP-led NDA in March over the issue of special status to the state. Naidu has since been targeting BJP and Modi for going back on their promise to accord special status.
Parakala Prabhakar used to be the spokesperson of the former Praja Rajyam Party, which was started by actor-politician Chiranjeevi, before it merged with the Congress.
A political commentator, he tried to contest from Narsapur on a Congress ticket in 1994, and had close ties with former Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao.
It is unclear whether his resignation has been accepted by the Chief Minister.