Narayan Rane detained over ‘slap Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray’ remark

NEW DELHI: Union Minister Narayan Rane was on Tuesday (August 24) detained by Ratnagiri police in Maharashtra after row over his controversial remark that he would have ‘slapped Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray’.

A team of police personnel went to Rane’s camp in Sangameshwar in Ratnagiri when he was en route on his ‘Jan Ashirwad Yatra’ in the Konkan region. The developments came barely a couple of hours after Narayan Rane sharply dared that ‘nobody could do anything to him’ or prevent him from ‘moving around freely’.

A team of senior police officers met Narayan Rane and later completed the arrest formalities even as a large number of his supporters and a huge posse of police were present. An aide to the central minister Pramod Jathar claimed that no arrest warrant has been produced and the police pleaded that they were under ‘pressure’ to arrest Rane. Jathar added that ‘there is the rule of law’ in the state but the police were not following the due protocols, not showing the arrest warrant or other documents for the same.

Earlier in the day, Rane approached a sessions court n Ratnagiri, seeking pre-arrest bail. The sessions court, however, refused to grant any relief, noting that the case was registered in Nashik and hence, it did not have the jurisdiction to hear the application.

Rane had sparked off a row over his remarks about slapping Chief Minister and Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray for what he claimed as the latter’s ignorance of the year of India’s independence. “It is shameful that the chief minister does not know the year of independence. He leaned back to enquire about the count of years of independence during his speech. Had I been there, I would have given (him) a tight slap, Rane said during his ‘Jan Ashirwad Yatra’ in Raigad district on Monday.

The BJP leader and former Shiv Sena chief minister claimed Thackeray forgot the year of independence during his August 15 address to the people of the state. Thackeray had to check the year of independence with his aides midway during the speech that day, Rane said.

Following his remarks, a complaint was lodged against Rane by Nashik city Shiv Sena unit chief at the Cyber police station there.

Based on the complaint, an FIR was registered against Rane in Nashik under IPC sections 500 (defamation), 505(2) (mischief), 153-B (1)(c) (remarks likely to cause disharmony, or feeling of enmity or hatred or ill-will), a police official said. Nashik Police Commissioner Deepak Pandey on Tuesday issued orders for the immediate arrest of Rane after an FIR was registered against him in the north Maharashtra city over his remarks against the CM.

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