Panaji, Jan 20 (IANS): Former Chief Minister and Goa's most veteran legislator, Pratapsingh Rane, on Thursday slammed BJP's Goa election in-charge Devendra Fadnavis for putting words in his mouth, while finalising the candidature of his daughter in-law Divya Rane on a BJP ticket for the upcoming Assembly polls from Poriem, a seat which Pratapsingh Rane has held for more than 50 years without defeat.
Speaking to reporters, Rane said that he had no conversation with Fadnavis related to politics and accused the latter of spreading "fake news" in his media briefing in the national capital on Thursday during which the ruling party announced its first list of 34 candidates for the upcoming Assembly elections scheduled on February 14.
"The Poriem seat is Pratapsingh Rane's seat. He has been elected from that seat for 50 years on a Congress ticket. The Congress has never lost from there. We had requested Rane and told him that the Congress is sinking and it can never do any good for the country," Fadnavis told a press conference in Delhi.
"Therefore, he (Rane Sr) should give the seat to the BJP and either he should contest on a BJP ticket or help the BJP. He accepted what we said and said that I have aged so I will not contest, Divya Rane will contest instead," the former Maharashtra Chief Minister said.
Pratapsingh Rane has, however, slammed Fadnavis for his comments.
"It is not right. My name is being used, it should not be done. Poriem is not my backyard. This is fake news. Fadnavis met me several days ago. He had visited me. But I have not spoken any politics with him. Whether I contest or not is a different matter. First this needs to be clarified," Rane told reporters.
Rane, a legislator from Poriem, has completed 50 years as a legislator without a single defeat in Assembly polls. His son Vishwajit Rane is a BJP MLA and the Health Minister in the Pramod Sawant-led Cabinet.
Earlier this month, Rane had said that he would be contesting the Assembly polls on the insistence of his supporters from Poriem. But the senior Congress leader claimed he was reluctant to contest the elections, soon after his son Vishwajit said that he should gracefully retire from politics and even threatened to contest the elections against his father from Poriem.