Former Congress leader Narayan Rane on Monday claimed that had he been given a chance to contest the Legislative Council polls slated for December 7, he would have won by 12-14 votes.
Rane claimed that even if there was staunch opposition from the Shiv Sena, maximum votes would have come from the Uddhav Thackeray-led party. “I met Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis at Varsha at 9:30pm on Sunday. During the meeting, he put forward before me the stand of the BJP and I agreed to it and decided not to contest the (MLC) polls. Prasad Lad was then given the opportunity and he filled his form,” Rane said.
The BJP on Monday announced its Maharashtra unit vice-president Prasad Lad as its candidate for the legislative council bypoll slated for December 7. The bypoll is being held for the seat vacated by Rane who quit the Congress party in September.
On being asked if his name was dropped due to the opposition from the Shiv Sena, he said it was the BJP’s and the CM’s prerogative to decide on how much importance to give to Sena’s opposition. “I resigned from the Congress and joined the NDA on the insistence of senior BJP leader and Chief Minister (Fadnavis). It is my duty to trust the assurances given to me by him. I am not ready to believe all this is happening (referring to his name being dropped) due to the Sena,” he said.
“Today the BJP is in power, Gujarat Assembly polls are around the corner. After they explained all of this, I decided not to contest the polls,” he said. “When (Congress leader and former Maharashtra chief minister) Prithviraj (Chavan) says all three (Congress, NCP, Sena) will come together against me (if he was given a ticket), then all of them coming together against me is itself my victory. I won without even fighting,” Rane said.
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