VICTORY: A triumphant Babush Monserrate takes out a victory rally after proving that the Parrikar magic no longer works in the capital city Panjim. Babush won the Panjim seat, which was held by the BJP for 25 years, by a margin of about 1,750 votes

by Rajan Narayan

The body language of the candidates said it all. While Babush looked extremely confident and relaxed, his main opponent Sidharth looked disheartened if not defeated. Sidharth’s wife Sonia would have made a better candidate.

DEFECTOR: Subhash Shirodkar who resigned from the Congress to contest on the BJP ticket won with a narrow margin 67 votes against MGP president Deepak Dhavalikar

Atanasio (Babush) Monserrate, as expected, has knocked out Sidharth Kuncalienker of the BJP. The Parrikar factor did not play a part as Ponjekar’s are finally giving vent to their ire over the state of Panjim city.

CELEBRATION: For Jennifer Monserrate, the Taleigao MLA, it was a three-in-one celebration, May 23 being her wedding anniversary as also birthday of her elder son, Rohit. Babush thanked Jennifer for his victory and added that people, particularly women, were confident now that they were safe. (left) Jennifer hugs younger son, Amit; (right) Jennifer, with son Rohit (wearing sunglasses) and supporters

During a debate on Prudent Media for the first time one of the poor families had the guts to openly say that Parrikar made no contribution to Panjim city. GSM candidate Subhash Velingkar also pointed out that the BJP manifesto has remained the same since 1994. The St Inez nullah has been not been cleaned. There is no garbage management and Parrikar sabotaged the working of the CCP controlled by Babush by appointing a commissioner who would not obey the mayor.
Ponjekar’s voted for change and hopefully Babush will deliver on his promises to the residents of Panjim.

DYNASTY: Joshua, son of former Deputy Chief Minister Francis D Souza, justified the BJP hopes by winning the Mapusa Assembly seat held by his late father, Francis D’Souza, for over two decades

However, Babush may not realize his hopes of forming a Congress government. This is because the Congress has not been able to win the other three seats where by-elections were held; namely Mapusa, Mandrem and Shiroda. The BJP has retained the Mapusa seats with Joshua, son of the late Francis D’Souza, emerging victorious in a ding dong battle. Congress defector Shubhash Shirodkar also succeeded in defeating MGP president Deepak Dhavalikar by a narrow margin, ending 76 votes ahead.

SETBACK FOR BJP: Veteran Congress candidate and former Chief Minister Fransisco Sardinha defeated the sitting BJP MLA Narendra Sawaikar by a small margin winning the South Goa Parliamentary seat

But more importantly even if the Congress had won the three other bye-election it is unlikely that Vijai Sardesai would be incline to extend his support to his good friend Babush whom he had made the vice president of the Goa Forward. Vijai is unlikely to take the risk of extending support to Babush to topple the BJP government considering the massive victory of Modi and company. The GF moreover is a formal member of the NDA floated by the BJP.

MANDREM: Dayanand Sopte scored over Independant candidate Jit Arolkar, dramatising that defection pays. His victory came despite opposition from former BJP Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar

The consolation price for the Congress in Goa is that it has won the South Goa parliamentary seat. It would appear that the Congress high command judgment of fielding the veteran Francisco Sardinha was right after all. Girish Chodankar has been unfortunate enough to lose the North Goa parliamentary seat to veteran BJP leader Shripad Naik. Panaji is the only bright spot for the Congress.

FORLORN: Even the gods could not help Sidharth Kuncalienker who is reported to have gone to Tirupati to invoke the blessing of Lord Balaji for victory in the Panjim Constituency
DEFEATED: GPCC President Girish Chodankar who was contesting the North Goa seat was defeated by five time MP and former Minister for Ayush Shripad Naik
DASHED: The hopes of Ashish Shirodkar (left), Independant candidate for Mapusa and Valmiki Naik (right), the AAP candidate for Panjim, were dashed. Valmiki could not get even a thousand votes

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