VIJAYAWADA: Former prime minister P V Narasimha Rao was made a scapegoat in the Babri Masjid demolition issue, opined retired IAS officer and the then media advisor to prime minister, P V R K Prasad.
Interacting with mediapersons on the occasion of release of a book 'Asalem Jarigindante' written by him narrating his personal experiences as the PM's advisor, he said that even senior BJP leaders Atal Behari Vajpayee and Advani did not know about the demolition of Babri Masjid and it was an act of party activists who gathered there. He explained the role of godman Chandraswamy during the Ayodhya dispute.
Stating that P V Narasimha Rao was a great visionary, Prasad said the later prime minister had initiated economic reforms and implemented them taking the help of eminent economist Manmohan Singh.
He mentioned in his book the causes that led to distribution of money by him as a Secretary following the instructions of then chief minister P V Narasimha Rao during Telangana and Jai Andhra agitations. He said P V Narasimha Rao had supported Samaikyandra.
The retired IAS officer said that PV Narasimha Rao was instrumental in establishing good relations between India and US as an external affairs minister and prime minister.
He said when former chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy approached Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao for chief minister post in 1992, the latter praised YSR's active role in the party and asked him to wait for some time. Rajasekhara Redy was angry with him for denying him the post.
The retired official wrote about the role of businessmen in politics.
The interesting points in the book include the causes that led to extension of support to AIADMK in Tamil Nadu by Congress party, though P V Narasimha Rao was aware of the party's defeat in elections.
Prasad expressed concern over failure of the Government in honouring the great visionary even after his death. He said that as Narasimha Rao's associate he knew about the agony he had gone through after cases were foisted against him in the evening of his life. He said that Narasimha Rao had asked his friends to sell away his house at Banajara hills to clear the dues of advocates.
The retired IAS officer expressed surprise over poor financial position of a person who had served as chief minister, external affairs minister and prime minister of the country.