Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan has pleaded ignorance about claims made by rebel state minister Narayan Rane regarding assurance of chief ministership by the Congress when he left Shiv Sena nine years ago.
Referring to the tirade launched by Rane, Chavan said, "I have no idea of what he assumed about his political future when he left the Shiv Sena to join the Congress.”
"He is angry over this issue (being denied chief ministership). But I have no knowledge of what understanding he had that time and I cannot be held responsible for this."
Considered a political heavyweight in the Konkan region of Maharashtra, Rane has alleged that the Congress had gone back on its assurance to make him chief minister within six months after joining the party.
Rane, who held the industries portfolio in Chavan's cabinet, recently resigned from the post expressing his ire over Congress high command's failure to keep the promise purportedly given to him.
He also attacked Chavan saying the Maharashtra Congress was sure to lose forthcoming assembly polls under his leadership. "I have not accepted his resignation and he continues to be a member of my cabinet. I have conveyed his expectations to the party high command. Rane has met the Congress leadership in Delhi which will take a decision in this regard," Chavan told a Marathi news channel.
Asked whether he felt hurt when Rane questioned his ability to lead the party in the Assembly poll, the CM said, "I felt bad because of the personal attack on me. But continued a dialogue with him in the interest of the party."
Image: Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan