In a veiled warning to the Shiv Sena in Maharashtra, union minister and BJP leader Narayan Rane, who is locked in a bitter fight with the party, on Friday said he knew a lot of things about the party and its leaders and would bring out cases “step by step". Without taking anybody’s name, he said he knew who had asked whom to throw acid on brother’s wife. Rane was speaking at a rally in Ratnagiri district as a part of his ‘Jan Ashirwad Yatra’.
Earlier this week, he had made remarks against Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, which kicked up a row and led to his arrest on Tuesday before his release a few hours later. The episode had sparked clashes between Sena and BJP supporters. “I have worked with them for 39 years, I know a lot of things. I know who asked whom to throw acid on his own brother’s wife. What kind of sanskar is it?" the BJP leader asked on Friday.
In a veiled attack on Thackeray, who is also the Sena president, Rane said, “What did one achieve by arresting a union minister? I will bring out cases step by step. A Sena boy, Varun Sardesai, had come outside my home (in Mumbai) and threatened me. If he comes next time, he won’t go back," the former Maharashtra chief minister added.
Sardesai is a leader of the Yuva Sena, the youth wing of the Shiv Sena. Yuva Sena workers had protested outside Rane’s bungalow in Mumbai on Tuesday over his remarks. Rane, who started off his political career as a Sena worker, became the CM in 1999. In 2005, however, he was expelled from the Sena for “anti-party activities". After that, he joined the Congress and stayed there till 2017.
After quitting the Congress, he launched the Maharashtra Swabhiman Paksha in October 2017. In 2018, he declared support for the BJP and was elected to the Rajya Sabha on that party’s nomination. In October 2019, he merged his party with the BJP. He was made the union minister for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) last month in the cabinet reshuffle.