MUMBAI: Sulking Maharashtra Industries Minister Narayan Rane, who was pitching for a leadership change ahead of the state assembly elections, today resigned from the government.
Rane met Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan at the latter's official residence 'Varsha' and submitted his resignation.
The leader has, however, not quit Congress and is expected to spell out reasons for his leaving the ministry at a media briefing later today.
Rane, a chief ministerial aspirant, was upset with the party for not giving him the top post, which he always claimed was promised to him when he joined the Congress after leaving Shiv Sena in 2005.
Addressing a meeting in Kankavali on July 19, Rane, an influential leader in the Konkan region, had trained his guns on Chief Minister Chavan and said assembly elections results would not be different from the Lok Sabha polls if they were to fight under the present leadership.
Rane, a former Shiv Sena chief minister, had resigned as minister after his son Nilesh lost the Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg Lok Sabha constituency in the May general elections. However, the party did not accept his resignation.
Congress President Sonia Gandhi had yesterday held consultations with senior leaders from Maharashtra including the Chief Minister following Rane's decision to quit his post but apparently endeavours to placate him failed.
Meanwhile, sources close to Rane said that Chavan told him he would apprise Congress president Sonia Gandhi of his resignation and then get back to him.