Taming Narayan Rane....!!

Shiv Sena and Congress failed to tame him, will BJP able to tame him? - Sakshi Post

By Mahesh Vijapurkar

It is not yet confirmed if Narayan Rane, a stormy Maharashtra politician, will be taken on board by the Bharatiya Janata Party but it has been speculated for long that he wants to join the biggest party. The decision of Amit Shah and Narendra Modi would prevail but there is unease in the party about inducting the man.

There are good reasons why Maharashtra’s BJP ranks have apprehensions about Rane’s migration from Congress to BJP. When he traveled to meet Amit Shah in Ahmedabad, some worried BJP person leaked the information, thus taking the likely sting out of his as well as BJP’s plans. Rane has chosen to remain silent.

His departure from the Congress would be a major jolt only in terms of optics to it, but it is quite likely that it would be relieved. His shift from Shiv Sena to Congress in the past was welcomed, so would his departure now should it happen. For he has been a disrupter, seeking the chief minister’s post when Congress was in power in alliance with the Nationalist Congress Party.

Congress has not been able to tame him, and currently has no opportunities to offer him as it dwindles in size and significance. It is Rane who is seeking new pastures because he and his family of politicians – he and two sons – are in a cul-de-sac. BJP’s response to his desperation is opportunistic, to make a diminished Congress smaller, but with a willingness to take some risks.

Accommodating Narayan Rane in the state’s power structure can be upsetting. The response of the Shiv Sena when it sees him or his son in the cabinet will likely be adverse . They may not want to sit in the cabinet with him. Unless, this is planned as a means to eject the Sena out and opt for mid-term elections.

BJP, struggling to keep the fraught marriage with Shiv Sena alive, would need a lot of visible and invisible calisthenics to keep Rane and his aspirations in check. Once Rane was seen as ‘controlling’ an entire district of Sindhudurg with his family – sons Nilesh and Nitesh – and they too have to be accommodated. Mere small change won’t do for them. Key positions is what they need.

Accommodating Narayan Rane in the state’s power structure can be upsetting, adding to Devendra Fadnavis’ discomfort. The response of the Shiv Sena when it sees him or his son in the cabinet will likely be adverse and can well be imagined. They may not want to sit in the cabinet with him. Unless, this is planned as a means to eject the Sena out and opt for mid-term elections.

After losing the 2014 elections, he tried his luck with a byelection with a similar outcome. He has been in the wilderness of a kind. He has been desperate to find a perch and the best, he feels, is the chief minister’s chair. It is possible Rane would be asked to settle for a Rajya Sabha seat, accommodating his sons in the legislative council and a portfolio, respectively.

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