In a huge embarrassment for BJP in Goa, its outgoing chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar met with a crushing defeat, losing by around 3,500 votes to Congress candidate Dayanand Sopte in Mandrem constituency of North Goa.
BJP is leading 12 seats in Goa while Congress has 16 seats and eight seats for others. The BJP had won 21 seats in 2012 elections and Congress 9.
Parsekar, who had won thrice from the constituency before, took over as CM in 2014 after Manohar Parrikar left for New Delhi to take up the role of defence minister. The loss may well be the end of the road for Parsekar, who is a life-long BJPian. The party had to rely on its star campaigner Parrikar. During the campaign, the party deliberately refrained from projecting Parsekar for CM’s post. According to reports, Parsekar faced competition from his own colleagues including deputy CM Francis D’Souza .
Parsekar shares a strong connection with BJP’s ideological arm RSS and has built a strong base for the party in Goa over the years. He was the president of the state BJP unit on two occasions.
In Uttarakhand the misfortune was for Congress, as its outgoing Chief Minister Harish Rawat lost Haridwar (Rural) seat and Kichcha, the two seat he was contesting.
The BJP has been leading in 54 seats in the 70-member Uttarakhand Assembly, while ruling Congress was racing ahead in 13.
Rawat lost the seat to BJP’s Yatishwaranand by over 12,000 votes in Haridwar, reflecting the reversal of fortune for Congress in the hill state. However, it cannot be ignored that Rawat campaigned almost single- handedly against the BJP and Modi.
Though Rawat tried to place himself as a man of development, he failed to bring vikas to the regions beyond Dehradun.