Zee Media Bureau/Ajith Vijay Kumar
Mumbai: Disgruntled Congress leader and Industries Minister Narayan Rane, who resigned from the Maharashtra cabinet today, launched a direct attack on Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and alleged that his faulty style of functioning had led to party`s defeat in Lok Sabha polls
Addressing a press conference at his residence, Rane slammed CM Chavan was to be blamed for the slow decision making by the government. “Decisions were not taken, if taken they were not implemented.”
Rane further said that the lack of governance in the state has made people angry as was evident by the Lok Sabha poll results.
The former Shiv Sainik – he had joined the Congress in 2005 - claimed that the CM had failed to serve the people of the state, while stressing that no attempt is being made to curb corruption in the state and that people are not getting justice.
Rane added that he did not see a good future for the Congress in the upcoming elections. "I don`t want to be a partner in the defeat in the assembly polls and that`s why I have quit," he said.
“Public work was not getting done. Hence I resigned. I am unhappy with party,” he said.
Rane, an aspirant for CM`s post for long, also expressed his displeasure with Congress` central leadership.
"I was told I will be made CM in six months. But in nine years the promise has not been kept," Rane, who has been publicly claiming he was assured of chief minister`s post when he quit Shiv Sena to join Congress in 2005, said.
"Not a single associate who came with me to Congress was made legislator," Rane, a former Shiv Sena chief minister, said.
He, however, said he would not leave the Congress.
"The CM has informed me he will speak to Sonia Gandhi and revert to me. I will announce my next move after that," he said.
Rane, who had joined the Congress after he quit the Shiv Sena in 2005, had been at loggerheads with the state Congress leadership for a while now and has repeatedly criticized its style of functioning. The matter turned for the worse after his son Nilesh lost from Ratnagiri- Sindhudurg Lok Sabha seat to Shiv Sena. Rane feels that Congress` alliance partner Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) conspired to ensure his son`s defeat.
With the Congress managing to win just two of the 27 seats it contested provided more ammunition to him against the party leadership. During the campaign, Rane had lamented that Congress had not utilised his services properly.
He had tendered his resignation from the Cabinet on the day results were declared but Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan turned it down.
Also, reports had claimed that Rane had expected to replace Chavan as the chief minister following the poll loss but the Congress high command decided against replacing the incumbent chief minister just months before the state goes to polls.
Though Rane has said that he will not quit the Congress, reports had earlier claimed that Rane is in touch with the BJP. After the untimely demise of Gopinath Munde, a mass leader form the backward community, the BJP is said to be on the lookout for a strong Maratha face in the state.
Rane seems to fit the bill but for the party but given Shiv Sena`s strong opposition to any move to bring him in to the saffron camp, Rane joining the BJP seems a distant possibility.
Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray had said in no uncertain terms that Rane is not welcome the `Mahayuti` alliance led by the Senaa nd the BJP.
Thacekeray`s strong words resulted in a strong retort by Rane who said Uddhav had no moral right to comment on his future political plans. "Shiv Sena is a leaderless party. A person like Uddhav who can`t handle his own outfit should not comment on others. Those who fear my shadow should not criticize me," he had said.
Asked to comment on Rane`s virulent attack against him, the Shiv Sena chief said, "I think he needs consolation."
Rane was inducted as minister in the Vilasrao Deshmukh government soon after he joined the Congress in 2005. Reports had suggested that Rane had joined the Congress on the understanding that he would be given a shot at the top job. However, the Congress had other ideas and made it clear that his entry into the party was without any preconditions.
Rane had served as chief minister for nine months while in Shiv Sena in 1999 when the NDA government was at helm in Maharashtra.