Deshmukh hits back at Rane, calls him ‘ideologically bankrupt’

December 5th, 2008 - 11:23 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Dec 5 (IANS) Outgoing Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh Friday evening described cabinet colleague Narayan Rane as “ideologically bankrupt”, hours after the revenue minister criticised him while withdrawing from the race for chief minister.”Rane is spewing fire because he could not become the state chief minister. In fact, he has joined the Congress only to become the CM. His allegations are uncultured,” Deshmukh told mediapersons late in the evening.

Deshmukh’s comments came after a large group of Rane’s supporters gathered outside the chief minister’s official residence ‘Varsha’ at Malabar Hill in south Mumbai following the anointment of Industries Minister Ashok Chavan as the new chief minister.

The outgoing chief minister said that Rane’s utterances were an insult to the Congress party’s central leadership. Rane had accused Deshmukh and others of conspiring to keep him away from the post.

Though he claimed that he “was not quitting the Congress”, Rane said he was no longer interested in holding any party post - putting a question mark on whether he would be inducted into the Ashok Chavan cabinet.

Rane, an aggressive leader with an independent support base, had quit the Shiv Sena in 2005 after differences with the party leadership, and joined the Congress.

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