Goa Vote Count: BJP, Cong In Hung Assembly as CM Parsekar Resigns

Counting of votes is officially over for the Goa State Sate Assembly Elections 2017.

(Photo: The Quint)
  • No single party could get 21 seats or more to form a majority government
  • Congress’ Digvijaya Singh has called for a party meet to discuss alliances with MGP, GFP
  • BJP’s Amit Shah, Manohar Parrikar has also said the party will form the government in the state
  • GFP, MGP and Independent candidates won three seats each and NCP won one

CM Laxmikant Parsekar addresses a press conference, along with Manohar Parrikar. Both take turns to say that though the number of seats are a little less than Congress, the voting percentage of BJP is 33% and Congress is 28%, that is 5% more.

(Photo: The Quint)
(Photo: The Quint)
(Photo: The Quint)

The counting of votes is officially over for the Goa State Sate Assembly Elections 2017. The final tally is:

Arvind Kejriwal guarantee of the AAP winning “35 out of 40 seats” fails as the party fails to secure even one seat.

CM Laxmikant Parsekar submits his resignation to the Governor of Goa after losing his seat in his home constituency of Mandrem by 7,000+ votes. Six of seven other sitting ministers of the BJP who contested these elections were also unable to retain their seats.

Goa Forward Party (GFP), floated just a year ago, emerged a force to reckon with, winning three seats – Fatorda, Siolim and Saligao. GFP candidates defeated two BJP ministers Dayanand Mandrekar (Siolim) and Dilip Parulekar (Saligao).

MGP won in three constituencies, but lost two sitting seats Ponda — represented by Lavoo Mamlatdar — and Priol from where party President Dipak Dhavalikar was elected last time. The party retained Madkai, where its leader Sudin Dhavalikar won with a margin of more than 13,000 votes. Dhavalikar, elder of the two brothers who run the party, is MGP’s CM candidate, as well. It is this ambition of his that is said to be one of the leading causes in the split between the BJP and MGP’s alliance.

It also won Pernem where its candidate Manohar Asgaonkar defeated BJP Minister Rajendra Arlekar and Sanvordem where its nominee Dipak Pawaskar trounced BJP's sitting MLA Ganesh Gaonkar. Independents won in Porvorim, Priol and Sanguem beating two BJP candidates.

(With inputs from PTI)

He also thanked India for BJP’s victory in UP and Uttarakhand and coming in at second place in Manipur.

  • Mahadev Naik
  • Dilip Parulekar
  • Dayanand Mandrekar
  • Rajendra Aarlekar
  • Avertan Furtado
  • Laxmikant Parsekar (CM)
(Illustration: The Quint)

Former Goa Chief Minister and veteran Congressman Digambar Kamat, who won from Margao constituency, credits his party workers for the victory:

I attribute my victory to all my party workers who stood by me and reposed their faith in me. The BJP-led government tried to harass me. They filed fake cases against me. They tried to jail me. Only God protected me.

The 63-year-old leader was at helm of affairs in Goa from 2007-12. He was booked by Goa Crime Branch in the multi-crore Louis bribery case in 2015 along with his former cabinet colleague Churchill Alemao.

Speaking to CNN News18, GFP’s Vijay Sardesai who won from Fatorda earlier today, says:

Congress can’t take us for granted, we’ll support them. We need to see how our party can grow. We will take stock of final numbers this evening.

GFP has won three seats this time, opposed to five in 2012.

Referring mainly to BJP’s thumping lead in UP and Uttarakhand state elections, Amit Shah tells the press:

These are very encouraging results for BJP. This is a historic mandate for the party. This is a victory of the people. We will form government in Manipur and Goa also

Congress too has said it will form the government, and is in talks with MGP and GFP for an alliance. General Secretary Digvijaya Singh has called for a party meeting at 6 pm today to discuss the same.

Screenshot from EC’s website

Only three more constituencies are left to be counted and both BJP and Congress are stuck at the 13-14 mark, making a hung Assembly certain. ‘Others’ have emerged victorious beyond the expectations of political pundits, winning 10 seats in total.

Former minister Sudin Dhavlikar wins from the Marcaim seat by a margin of 13,680 votes, defeating BJP's Pradeep Sheth.

(Photo: The Quint)

BJP’s Sidharth Kuncalienker wins in Panaji by 919 votes defeating Atanasio aka Babush Monserrate, a sitting MLA from the United Goan’s Party (UGP) who was accused of raping a Nepali girl in 2016.

(Photo: The Quint) 

Tourism minister Dilip Parulekar loses in Saligao to Goa Forward Party's Jayesh Salgaonkar, by a margin of 2137 votes. He is the third sitting minister to have lost his seat, along with CM Parsekar.

(Photo: The Quint)
Screenshot from EC’s website

Dayanand Mandrekar and Dilip Parulekar are sitting minsters while Laxmikant Parsekar is the outgoing Chief Minister of Goa.

Congress’ National General Secretary Digvijaya Singh is likely to hold a party meeting at 6 pm today. Congress and BJP are in a neck-and-neck race, both parties likely to miss the magic number of 21 seats.

Speaking to the press, Singh asserted that in case of a hung Assembly, Congress would make all efforts to form the government by reaching out to other parties like MGP and GFP. However, he added that the CM would be from Congress, reports Firstpost. 

Early this morning, the social media accounts of AAP members were buzzing with optimism and cheer. Five hours into counting of votes and zero seats later, all of their social media accounts have fallen silent– even Kejriwal’s!

(Photo: The Quint)

INC’s former CM, Digambar Kamat beat BJP’s Sharad Raiturkar by 4,176 votes in Margao.

(Photo: The Quint)
(Photo: The Quint)
(Photo: The Quint)

In Siroda, INC’s Subash Shirodkar beats BJP’s Mahadev Naik by 4,870 votes.

AAP continues with its null score, while its CM candidate Elvis Gomes also slipped to the fourth position in Cuncolim. Twitter continues to have a field day.

(Photo: The Quint) 

Congress scores another seat as Monserrate beats BJP’s Dattaprasad Naik by 2,855 votes in her home constituency of Taleigao. It was this constituency where the local priest had openly asked people to vote for Congress.

(Photo: The Quint)

She made news when she defended her husband, three-time MLA Babush Monserrate who had been accused of raping a woman in 2016. He is contesting these elections from Panaji, for which counting is yet to begin.

(Photo: The Quint)
  • In Bicholim, Rajesh Patnekar (BJP) beats MGP’s Naresh Sawal by 666 votes
  • In Aldona, Glenn Ticlo (BJP) beats Amarnath Panjikar (INC) by 4,456 votes
  • In Siolim, Vinoda Datarama Paliencar (GFP) defeats BJP’s Dayanand Mandrekar by 1,441 votes
(Photo: The Quint)

Lobo beat INC’s Joseph Robert Sequiera by 3,825 votes.

Premanand Nanoskar (Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party) loses to Godinho (BJP).

(Photo: The Quint)

The MGP, one of the oldest regional outfits, broke alliance with the BJP before the elections and joined hands with the Shiv Sena and Goa Suraksha Manch (GSM) instead. Political analysts said this alliance could erode BJP’s traditional Hindu vote base, but as of now BJP has won three seats and is leading in four, while the MGP has won zero seats and only has one lead.

Former Goa CM and Leader of Opposition, Congress’ Pratapsingh wins in Poriem, beating BJP’s Vishwajit Krishnarao Rane.

(Photo: The Quint)
(Illustration: The Quint)

AAP’s CM candidate Elvis Gomes, who was till now trailing in Cuncolim by 1,500+ votes, has fallen to the third position in the constituency.

(Photo: The Quint)

Deputy CM Francis D'Souza wins from Mapusa constituency by a margin of over 6,000 votes.

(Photo: The Quint)

Congress’ Francisco Silveira wins from St Andre, beating BJP’s Ramrao Wagh by 5,070 votes. However, in Maem, Praveen Zantye of BJP beat INC’s Santosh Kumar Sawant by almost 5,000 votes.

(Photo: The Quint)

Despite much confidence in their victory, Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party is yet to lead or even trail in the second position across the state. The party fielded the most number of candidates in Goa.

The irony of AAP’s early confidence, including Kumar Vishwas’ comment this morning of introducing ‘alternative politics’ in the state is not lost on the people of Twitter.

(Illustration: The Quint)

Incumbent Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar loses in his home constituency of Mandrem to Dayanand Sopte (INC), as reported by CNN News 18’s Mumbai Bureau Chief, Smitha Nair.

Goa Deputy Chief Minister Francis D'Souza is leading in Mapusa constituency by 6,316 votes. He has remained undefeated here since 1999. His victory might strengthen his claim to the CM seat as Goa’s first Christian CM from BJP, after he was overlooked for Parsekar in 2014 when Manohar Parrikar was summoned to the centre by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

(Photo: The Quint)

Leader of opposition, Congress’ Pratapsingh Rane leads in Poriem. Former CM, Churchill Alemao (NCP) is leading from Benaulim. INC leads in the state on 8 seats.

AAP’s Chief Ministerial candidate Elvis Gomes is trailing in Cuncolim, surpassed by Congress’ Clafasio Dias. The party is yet to open its account in Goa.

(Photo: The Quint)

Goa may be heading towards a hung assembly. It was Congress and NCP in 2007 and BJP in 2012. After ten years, uncertainty looms large in Goa.

Incumbent CM Parsekar is trailing by 1,000+ votes in his constituency Mandrem, where Congress’ Dayanand Sopte is leading.

(Photo: The Quint)

Though counting in the rest of the states began a 8 am, counting of EVMs began at 8:30 am. Leads for other states have started coming in as counting proceeds, but the Election Commission of India is eerily silent on any updates from Goa.

AAP leader Kumar Vishwas spoke to press about a confident victory in Punjab and creating ‘alternative politics’ in Goa. “Despite being a three to four-year-old party, we have decisively changed Indian politics,” he said.

Former psephologist Yogendra Yadav who left the field to take up politics, took to Twitter to summarise his opinion of which way the counting of votes will go today.

In 2015, when exit polls and a majority of mainstream media called the Bihar State Assembly elections incorrectly in favour of BJP, Yadav was the only one who predicted a victory for the Grand Alliance, instead.

Yogendra Yadav, speaking to Business StandardPoll forecasters should only give the vote shares and avoid predicting the number of seats a party might win -as they do in the West. But the television channels say percentage point doesn’t dish out enough masala to their viewers.

The first constituency up for counting is Mandrem in North Goa, of significant interest since it is where incumbent CM Laxmikant Parsekar contested these state assembly elections from.

Laxmikant Parsekar, speaking to News18. (Photo: The Quint)

Ahead of counting, defence minister Manohar Parrikar reached the state’s BJP office. Parrikar, who has been in Goa for the last three months, will be looking at a tough decision to make between state and centre in the occasion he has to return as Chief Minister. However, incumbent CM Laxmikant Parsekar is also in the fray.

Parrikar led the BJP to a comfortable victory in 2012. He was invited to join Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet as Defence Minister in 2014, and was succeeded by Laxmikant Parsekar.

Counting of postal votes will begin at 8 AM, whereas EVMs will be opened at 8:30 AM. Goa has a history of hung assemblies, with the chances of victory margins being small again this time around. Security has been tightened in anticipation of the counting.

On an average, each constituency has 440 postal ballots in each constituency. Goa has 11 lakh voters and 40 seats in the Assembly. So any constituency has an average of only 27,000 voters! That’s smaller than the size of a ward of many municipal corporations in India. In a four-way fight, a candidate needs only seven or eight thousand votes to win. A difference of a hundred votes can turn victory into defeat.

Counting of votes for assembly elections in Goa will commence at 8 am on Saturday morning, and trends are expected to be available by 11 am.

By 12 noon, a final picture could emerge on who would be the major player in the state.

According to Election Commission guidelines, half-an-hour after the postal ballots are counted, the process of counting of EVM votes begins. Counting will take place at two centres in Goa.

Electoral Commissioner of Mauritius, Mohammad Irfan Abdool Rahman, has arrived in Goa to witness the process of counting of votes.

He was informed about the usage of electronically transmitted postal ballot system for all the service voters of Goa, management of 40 pink polling stations by all women officials, and management of ‘Divyang’ polling stations by officials with disability.

In Goa, the average polls predicted a hung assembly.

(Photo: The Quint)

India Today-Axis predicted 18-22 seats for the BJP and 9-13 for the Congress. The India TV-CVoter poll said the BJP was expected to win 15-21 seats, the Congress and its allies 12-18, and the AAP 0-4 seats.

The NewsX-MRC survey said the BJP may get 15, the Congress 10, and the AAP seven.

BJP won both Lok Sabha seats in Goa by defeating Congress.

The voting percentage indicated that there was huge polling in the mining belt, where people were demanding resumption of economic activity in their belt. After the counting, it was indicated that the votes were polled in favour of the BJP in this belt.

However, traditional voters of Salcete taluka, with a predominantly Catholic population, preferred to remain with the Congress party.

(Photo: The Quint)

Manohar Parrikar led the BJP to a comfortable victory in 2012. He was invited to join Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet as Defence Minister in 2014, and was succeeded by Laxmikant Parsekar.

The party had a vote share of 34.68 percent.

(Photo: The Quint)

The focus in Goa will be on whether the BJP will be able to retain power and if it gets a fresh mandate, will Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar return to his home state as Chief Minister. The main fight for the 40-member assembly is between the BJP and the Congress.

The Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), one of the oldest regional outfits, broke alliance with the BJP before the elections, while the Goa Suraksha Manch (GSM) was floated by RSS rebel Subhash Velingkar. The combine, according to political analysts, could harm the BJP more than the Congress and the NCP.

The AAP, a new entrant to the electoral scene in the coastal state, has contested in 39 seats – and the leaders who campaigned for the party included Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

(With inputs from PTI)