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Bandra by-election: Nilesh Rane detained for poll code breach

PTI 11 Apr 2015, 14:32:56 PM IST

Mumbai: Former Congress MP Nilesh Rane was today detained for alleged election code violation following complaints that he was moving around with party workers campaigning for his father and senior leader Narayan Rane in Bandra (East) assembly constituency here, where voting is underway for the bypoll.

“Nilesh has been detained for inquiry after he flouted the model code of conduct. He was said to be roaming near polling booths in Bandra (East) area along with party workers,” a police officer said.

Soon after Nilesh was picked up, an enraged Narayan Rane lodged a protest against his ‘wrongful' detention and warned not to let in any vehicles of the Sena into the area till 5 pm, when the voting ends.

“My son Nilesh has been illegally detained by police.  Shiv Sena is misusing its power since they are going to lose this seat,” he said.

“If I find any Sena leader or minister moving in their vehicles in this area illegally campaigning for their party candidates, I myself will stop those vehicles and ensure that police initiate action against them,” he said.  The battle for Bandra (East) has become a prestige issue for Shiv Sena due to the challenge posed by the party renegade-turned-Congress leader Narayan Rane on the home turf of Uddhav Thackeray.

Sena has fielded Trupti Sawant, wife of sitting party MLA Bala Sawant whose death necessitated the bypoll.  For Rane, who lost last year's Assembly elections from his home-turf of Sindhudurg district, the bypoll is a do-or-die battle to stay relevant in the state politics as the humiliating defeat has significantly eroded his standing in the party.