15 Mar 2017 08:29pm IST
Although Damu led in 10 of the 38 booths in the constituency and increased his votes, he could not dethrone Vijay from his seat
MARGAO: One of the most vibrant and intense campaigns have taken place in the Fatorda constituency. Fatorda MLA Vijai Sardesai, who not only formed a party and got himself and two more MLAs elected under his banner, has also managed to snatch three cabinet ranks for his MLAs. How does this happen? What does it take to cross the river of fire is what Herald desires to inquire and place it before the people at large.
The analogy and analysis of the events which unfolded in the last one year of Goan politics may be the key to the answer. After winning with a huge sympathy wave in 2012, Vijai Sardesai became the fierce opposition to the BJP Government. Mopa, River Nationalisation, Maad issues are three of the major contributors in making the life size MLA a larger than life figure in South.
However, opposition to the rival, former MLA of Fatorda Damu Naik, kept the ante on Vijai and criticised his statements and moves. Things got clear threadbare in the 2015 Municipal Elections where Damu Naik failed to secure even one seat in the 25-member council. Damu Naik having patched up with his old foes claimed confidence while Vijai banked on his generous dose of critique towards the ruling BJP and betrayal of Congress.
Damu Naik, the MLA of Fatorda when BJP was in opposition, had faced the delimitation and the division disadvantage and got defeated by just over 1900 votes. Speculations were high that Vijai may find himself in a similar situation in which Damu was in 2012.
However, the speculation that Damu would win after Congress draws over 2500 votes in Fatorda this election has now fallen flat on its face. A look at the itemised breakup of the result shows that except for one booth in Ambaji, 2 in PWD & PHE, 1 booth of GPS new building, another 2 in PWD, 2 in Agalli areas, 3 in Borda areas and 1 in Pajifond. Damu has led in 10 booths of the 38 booths in Fatorda. Votes of Damu Naik have increased from 8436 to 9182. The total voting in 2012 was 21441 polled votes. Vijai has grown from 10375 in 2012 to 10516 in 2017 with total voting of 22818 votes polled.
The much hyped Congress ticket of Fatorda was allotted to Joseph Silva who could manage only 414 votes. AAP’s Ranjit Cotta Carvalho came third garnering 1479 votes. This result is almost similar to the last results where Independent Arthur D’Silva drew 1136 votes, Piedade Noronha drew 690 and M.K Shaikh getting 695 votes.
However areas like Ambaji, Chandrawado and Junta Quarters in Pajifond which had voted for Vijai last time round have gradually shifted to the BJP but not significant enough to give Damu Naik the edge.
When contacted Damu Naik he said “I have accepted the defeat very humbly and I feel better that I fought and lost and did not hang my boots before fighting.” He also said that BJP is his priority and whatever the party decides will be accepted and adopted in full humility and vigour.