Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray, 83, has challenged Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and industries minister Narayan Rane to prove their allegation, of the Shiv Sena having accepted Rs500 crore, from 11 power companies, in order to oppose the 9900 megawatt Jaitapur nuclear power plant.
“Prove the allegation. If you do so, I will immediately resign from the post of Shiv Sena chief,” Thackeray said, in a statement issued by the party on Friday.
However, if they were proved wrong, Rane and Chavan should quit, he added.
The Sena, in December 2010, had jumped into the Jaitapur debate, taking the side of the locals and intensifying their agitation on the issue of threat to livelihood and environment, posed by the proposed power plant in the region.
Rane had alleged that Thackeray had accepted a bribe of Rs500 crore, to oppose the construction of the power plant.
Thackeray also came down heavily on Chavan, referring to him as ‘brainless’ and ‘inefficient’. He also criticised him for believing Rane. “Everyone knows that Rane is no saint to make such allegations,” he said.
Thackeray appreciated Home Minister RR Patil, who had denied any formal complaint corruption pointed out by Rane.
“It is unfortunate that two ministers in your own cabinet have a different version. And you are making a statement without verifying the truth,” Thackeray told Chavan.