Utpal, son of former chief minister late Manohar Parrikar, Monday wrote a sharp letter to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar over his claim that the former defence minister had quit the Union cabinet over Rafale deal.
“This is yet another unfortunate and insensitive attempt to invoke my father’s name to push blatant falsehoods for political gains,” Utpal Parrikar has said in the letter to Pawar.
Manohar Parrikar, who had taken over as defence minister in November 2014, was sworn in as Goa chief minister on March 14, 2017, after more than one BJP ally conditioned their support to Parrikar being given the lead role in the state government. Parrikar died on March 17, 2019, after fighting a long battle with a pancreatic ailment.
Addressing media in Kolhapur a couple of days back, the NCP chief had claimed that the Rafale deal was not acceptable to
Manohar Parrikar and, therefore, he resigned from the post of defence minister and returned to Goa.
In his letter to Pawar, Utpal Parrikar has said, “My father had taken many historic decisions for which he will be remembered forever. One of them was the Rafale fighter aircraft acquisition deal of which he was one of the chief architects.”
“When the people of Goa wanted him to come back to serve them, Parrikar, ever the people’s leader, dutifully came back and served Goa till his last breath. It is an insult to the love between the people of Goa and Parrikar to falsely suggest that he came back due to the Rafale acquisition,” the elder son of the former defence minister said in the letter.
The letter, which was later released to the media, states that it is sad that those who never bothered to enquire about his father when he was putting up a brave fight against his illness have begun invoking his name to indulge in political mudslinging.
“I urge you to desist from such conduct. Allow us, the people of Goa and all Indians, to grieve in peace,” the letter concludes.