Rane cautions Congress High Command about state of affairs

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Nagpur, Oct 16 (UNI) Cautioning the Congress High Command about the state of affairs in the party in the run-up to next year's Assembly elections, Maharashtra Revenue minister Narayan Rane today said it was high time for everybody in the party to undertake serious introspection as the functioning of the top leadership in the state left much to be desired.

Asserting that the revival of Congress in the state was difficult in the existing state of affairs in the party, Mr Rane told newspersons here that there was resentment among the ordinary workers as well as the legislators.

Mr Rane, who is a strong contender for the post of Chief Minister, said he had got the due respect in the Congress, which he joined after quitting the Shiv Sena.''However, I have been given certain assurances but they have not been fulfilled. I have full faith in the party. I will speak on the issue at an appropriate time'', he added.

He said appointments to various boards and corporations were delayed by four years. ''What's the use of making the appointments now? They will need six months to get to know the working. By then, Assembly elections will be declared. The state leadership should have made the appointments immediately after the government was formed,'' he said, without naming anybody.

Similarly, the Cabinet expansion has been on hold for several months, Mr Rane said adding there has been too much delay.

Replying to questions, he said under the present circumstances the congress and NCP in the state needed each other and should fight the Assembly elections together. ''However, the Chief Minister and the MPCC chief should brief the High Command about the party's prospects if it fought the elections'', he said.

Commenting on a report Maharashtra had the highest number of communal riots, Mr Rane said that it was now the responsibility of the government to initiate immediate remedial measures.

''The top functionaries in the government are enlightened enough to know what is to be done, to restore the image of the state and the party in the mind of the public eye,'' he said.

Asked if the High Command did not monitor the affairs, Mr Rane shot back ''The High Command only gives guidance. It is the responsibility of the leadership in Maharashtra to get things done -- right and fast.'' The manner in which former Union Minister Subodh Mohite missed the deadline for filing his nomination for the upcoming by-election to the Maharashtra Legislative Council, indicated that there was mismanagement in the party, Mr Rane said.

''Once the High Command nominated Mr Mohite, it was the responsibility of the party machinery in the state to ensure that he made it to the returning officer's chamber on time,'' he added.

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