No Holds Barred: My Years in Politics

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Early in 1999, when Shiv Sena chief Balasaheb Thackeray decided to instal a new chief minister in Maharashtra, he was asked who the man of his choice was. 'New CM? Narayan Rane,' he replied, as though the question need not even have arisen. His pick was a mass leader who had first caught his attention as a teenager in a Mumbai suburb when Thackeray had just started his party in the 1960s. The committed Shiv Sainik with close access to the supremo, however, stormed out of the party and joined the Congress in 2005. In the years that followed, he was a powerful fixture in the cabinet of one of India's most politically significant states - always with a fighting chance of making a comeback as chief minister and perennially holding out an existential threat to not only his one-time bosses in the Shiv Sena but also the leaders of his own party. Today, having broken from the Congress too and been elected to the Rajya Sabha on a Bharatiya Janata Party nomination, he remains as unpredictable and aggressive as ever. In No Holds Barred, Narayan Rane looks back on the years he has spent in the dog-eat-dog world of Indian politics. Packed with revealing stories of his encounters with the who's who of the game in Maharashtra and at the Centre - ranging from the Thackerays, Pramod Mahajan, Gopinath Munde, Manohar Joshi, Vilasrao Deshmukh, Ashok Chavan and Devendra Fadnavis to Sharad Pawar, Ahmed Patel and Rahul and Sonia Gandhi - this is a truly candid and fearless tell-all that exposes the true nature of India's corridors of power.