Mumbai: Former Goa Congress legislator Vishwajit Rane on Thursday formally joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the presence of chief minister Manohar Parrikar. Parrikar told reporters that Rane would be inducted in the cabinet at the “right time". Last week, the BJP legislature party unanimously passed a resolution to induct Rane in the party as well as the cabinet.
Rane, son of senior Congress leader Pratapsinh Rane, quit the Congress party last month and also resigned from the assembly to protest against the Congress leadership’s failure to form government in Goa even after emerging the single largest party in the assembly polls. His father is a former chief minister of Goa.
Rane, 46, was elected from Valpoi constituency and said he would be contesting a by-poll for the same seat. The date of the by-poll has not been announced yet. Rane said he had taken the blessings of his father. He said his induction in the BJP was “unconditional" and he could contest the by-poll to get re-elected for the development of his constituency.
Along with Rane, the entire Congress committee of Valpoi constituency resigned and joined the BJP.
Rane had resigned his assembly membership on 16 March during the floor test ordered by the Supreme Court. He also walked out during the floor test, thus reducing the Congress strength from 17 to 16 in the 40-member Goa assembly.
Rane had blamed the Congress leadership, in particular Digvijay Singh, All India Congress Committee general secretary and Goa in-charge, for not moving fast enough to stake a claim for forming the government. Digvijay Singh hit back, accusing Rane of hobnobbing with the BJP right from the beginning.