Congress leader Narayan Rane Wednesday said the party leadership was not putting in its best effort to revitalise the rank and file after successive defeats at the Centre and in the state.
“After the reversal that Congress suffered, we have not seen any emergency steps taken by the party leadership to tone up the party… I don’t see better days returning to Congress unless it takes strong measures,” said Rane, who was in Pimpri-Chinchwad to attend the inauguration of a hotel owned by a local BJP leader’s family.
Replying to a specific question as to how he rated Rahul Gandhi’s leadership, Rane said: “I have not seen Rahul Gandhi taking any strong steps to pull the party out of the morass that it has sunk in. Rahul should in the larger interest of the party step forward and initiate steps that would revive the party rank and file, which has been badly shaken after the election defeats,” said Rane, pointing out that he had listed as many as 15 steps in his mouthpiece ‘Prahar’.
After inaugurating the hotel, Rane visited BJP MLA Laxman Jagtap at his residence. He spent some time chatting with Jagtap and other party leaders.
Both Rane and Jagtap denied that the former was joining BJP. “I am in Congress and have many friends in BJP. I keep visiting them,” he said. Asked whether BJP was trying to rope him in, Rane replied in the negative.
When asked as to why he has not made any statement for a long time, Rane said: “I have decided to keep quiet for some time… I will not say anything.”
Criticising the Devendra Fadnavis government in Maharashtra, Rane said it had done nothing to alleviate people’s misery. “Out of 100, I will give it zero marks… The government has not fullfilled any of its promises,” he said.