MNS, not Sena is Cong rival in Kalyan-Dombivali: Rane

Maharashtra Revenue Minister Narayan Rane today said Raj Thackeray-led MNS and not Shiv Sena was its main rival in the October 31 Kalyan-Dombivali Municipal Corporation (KDMC) elections.

Last Updated: Oct 11, 2010, 21:38 PM IST

Mumbai: Maharashtra Revenue Minister Narayan
Rane today said Raj Thackeray-led MNS and not Shiv Sena was
its main rival in the October 31 Kalyan-Dombivali Municipal
Corporation (KDMC) elections.

Addressing a press conference to release the first list
of 38 candidates, Rane who is the election-in charge, claimed
that the Sena, which is currently in power in the civic body,
would finish third at the hustings.

"Sena influence in Mumbai and Thane districts is waning.
Our rival here is MNS," he said.

Congress is contesting 55 and coalition partner NCP will
field candidates in 52 wards for the 107 member municipal
body, situated on the outskirts of Mumbai.

Rane said better civic amenities and effective
infrastructure would be the focus point of the Congress-NCP
campaign. He said the two coalition partners would issue a
joint manifesto. Rane accused the Sena of neglecting the
Kalyan-Dombivali towns.

He denied that his party had announced the first list of
only 38 candidates because there was still dispute over
certain seats. "We intend to make announcement in phases. The
second list will be announced in a day or two. There is no
dispute over any matter," he said.

When asked if KDMC was a "litmus test" for the Congress
ahead of the crucial Mumbai and Thane civic polls slated early
2011, Rane said all the three civic bodies were very
different. "I do not think the KDMC polls will have any
repercussions on the Mumbai civic elections," he added.

Meanwhile, Rane said the state government has prepared a
policy on sand mining which will be placed before the cabinet
next week.

"It would then be submitted before the court," he added.

Defending his decision to regularise the Lavasa project
near Pune by charging fine from the developers, Rane ruled out
meeting social activist Anna Hazare over the issue.

"The government cannot discuss each policy with every
individual," he added.

PTI