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Congress revokes Narayan Rane's suspension

Last updated on: February 16, 2009 16:18 IST

Former Maharashtra Chief Minister Narayan Rane's suspension from the Congress was revoked on Monday with immediate effect in an apparent move by the party high command to present a united face ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.

The announcement about the revocation of suspension of the Shiv Sena leader-turned-Congressman was made by All India Congress Committee General Secretary Janardan Dwivedi.

Rane had been suspended for lashing out at the Congress' top brass, including party chief Sonia Gandhi, after he lost the Maharashtra chief minister's post to Ashok Chavan. 

Since then, Rane had been giving conciliatory signals and also had a meeting with the new chief minister, a foe-turned friend, who had been reportedly lobbying with the high command for the senior leader's rehabilitation.

There have been reports that Rane, an influential leader from the Konkan area, could become a minister.

Party sources said that the suspension was revoked as the senior leader had expressed regrets over his action and utterances against the leadership.

The move has come at a time when the Congress is under pressure from Sharad Pawar's Nationalist Congress Party over seat sharing in the state. Congress leaders in Maharashtra have reportedly told the central leadership that a strong leader like Rane would be an asset to the party.

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