Maha political heavyweight Narayan Rane quits Congress; may join BJP

Yet another political heavyweight quit Congress and is speculated to join rival BJP fold. Senior politician and former Maharashtra Chief Minister Narayan Rane finally quit Congress party after days of speculation that he is going to join the BJP. He minced no words criticising the party in which he was for 12 years after his bitter parting with the Shiv Sena. “Before you remove me, I myself am resigning from Congress. I’ll be deciding on my future after Navratri. I’ll show Congress what my true power is. I’ll be travelling across the state from tomorrow,” he said in a press conference in Kankavli in Sindhudurg district.

“Except from getting me into problems, Congress has not done anything else. We don’t have any kind of relation with Congress. Congress has disrespected me. All the state leaders of Congress just know how to manipulate with power,” Mr Rane added.

Expressing his frustration with the Congress party which refused to elevate him to the chief minister’s post, Mr Rane said “Congress had promised to make me the chief minister of Maharashtra but they didn’t stick to their words. I was supposed to become the chief minister after Vilasrao Deshmukh. Prithviraj Chauhan was not in the race.” The 65-year-old, who started his political career with the Shiv Sena, was expelled by party patriarch Bal Thackeray in 2005. He soon joined the Congress. Mr Rane’s depleting support base is in the Konkan region in districts like Sindhudurg, Ratnagiri and Raigad. His stronghold is Kudal and the BJP could find him useful to expand its footprint there which is still a Sena stronghold.

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