Mumbai: Independent MP Navneet Rana and her MLA-husband Ravi on Monday said they will approach Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah to raise the issue of their alleged ill-treatment by Maharashtra authorities when the couple was in jail recently.
Talking to reporters here, Navneet Rana said Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, “who back-stabbed the BJP”, should not talk and teach the Ranas about principles.
The Ranas also dismissed the allegation that they committed contempt of court by speaking to the media.
On May 4, a special court here while granting bail to the couple said the duo shall not commit a similar offence while on bail, and not address the press on any subject related to the case. The couple was arrested on April 23 by the Mumbai police after they announced that they would recite ‘Hanuman Chalisa’ outside Chief Minister Thackeray’s private residence ‘Matoshree’ here, which had angered workers of the Shiv Sena, Thackeray’s party, leading to tension.
They walked out of jail on May 5 following which Navneet Rana was admitted to a private hospital here. Her lawyer had then said she had complaints of high blood pressure, body-ache and spondylitis.
She was discharged from the hospital on Sunday.
“We are going to Delhi today and meet all the leaders who respect women. I am going to meet the prime minister, (Union) home minister and Lok Sabha Speaker and tell them how we were ill-treated from a lockup to jail. I am going to complain about it,” said Navneet Rana, who was flanked by her husband. Describing Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut as a “parrot”, Navneet Rana alleged that he had talked about ”burying the couple”.
“We had filed a complaint against it here, but no action was taken. So, I am going to Delhi to raise the issue,” she said. The Ranas also categorically denied having committed any contempt of court by speaking to the press. “We did not talk about the offence, how it was registered against us, reciting ‘Hanuman Chalisa’ and Matoshree. We spoke about how I was ill-treated from the lockup to jail and how my health issues were avoided (ignored),” she said.
The Lok Sabha member from Amravati wondered would be the fate of common people if a public representative like her could be treated “in such a manner” in Maharashtra.
“So, it was important for me to speak up and the Constitution has given me the right as a public representative. Nobody should snatch my rights from me,” she said.
She said CM Thackeray should learn how to run the state from his predecessor and BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis.
“Devendra Fadnavis ji also ran the government for five years, but he was not this shrewd. Thackeray should learn from Devendra sahab how to run Maharashtra (government) and with what sentiments,” she said.
She further said that Thackeray, “who back-stabbed the BJP”, should not talk and teach the Ranas about principles. Ravi Rana, the MLA from Badnera in Amravati, also hit out at CM Thackeray over the Brihamumbai Municipal Corporation issuing a notice to the housing society where they live in suburban Khar here following a complaint of illegal construction.
”Thackeray should inspect our flat online since he worked only through the online platform for the past two-and-half years,” he quipped.
“You (the CM) can send Raut and (another Shiv Sena leader and state minister) Anil Parab, your right and left (hands), who are sitting idle. You can send them to take the measurements (of the house) if there is any problem. We will welcome them,” the MLA said. To a question, Ravi Rana said Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar should take information on how the couple was allegedly ill-treated when they were in the lockup and jail. “We were treated worse than a criminal,” he alleged, while responding to Pawar’s reported remark that the duo was served tea when taken to Khar police station before their arrest.