State industries minister, Narayan Rane on Saturday suffered a setback when his close aide Shrikant Sarmalkar rejoined the Shiv Sena after spending five years in the Congress party.
Sarmalkar called it his homecoming, while speaking at Matoshree, the official residence of Sena chief Bal Thackeray. “I had lost my direction in the last few years but now I am back,” said Sarmalkar.
He said he joined the party without any expectation and his only aim is to serve the people.
Incidentally in 2005, when Narayan Rane revolted against the Sena, Sarmalkar was leading his front. He was also arrested for his fight against Sena cadres.
However in recent years, he along with another Rane supporter Jaywant Parab were systematically sidelined to make way from Rane’s youngest son, Nitesh.
Both accused Rane of promoting dynastic rule, the same reason for which Rane had left the saffron outfit. Rane’s eldest son Nilesh is the Congress MP while the younger son heads the outfit, Swabhimaan, and handles the family business.
Speaking on the occasion, Sena executive president, Uddhav Thackeray said, “There are a few others who want to come back but we will not welcome everyone.”