Former Goa chief minister Churchill Alemao on Saturday resigned from the Congress to contest as an independent candidate from the South Goa Lok Sabha seat, protesting the denial of a party ticket to his daughter Valanka.
Alemao, who walked into the Congress house with the resignation letter this afternoon, held discussions with state party chief John Fernandes for ten minutes trying to convince him about his step, before finally putting down the papers.
Fernandes told Alemao that the decision of allotting a ticket is clearly the mandate of the 20-member central election committee, and as a party leader, “we need to accept it”.
The party has said that they have accepted the resignation and it will not hamper its prospects in the South Goa constituency.
"We are glad to accept his resignation. There will be nil impact on the party on account of this step. We will go the people and explain them,” Fernandes told reporters.
Alemao, who was strongly lobbying for his daughter Valanka, in South Goa had questioned the decision to give ticket to Aleix Reginaldo Lourenco, who is currently a member of legislative assembly.
He said that the Congress would lose the South Goa seat because of its weak candidate.
Alemao, however, did not rule out the possibility of rejoining the party after the polls, claiming that the “Congress is a vast ocean."
The local party leaders, however, were dismayed over the resignation. "The Congress is an ocean for people with ideas and ethos; not for the blackmailers," Fernandes said adding that "we don’t want him (Churchill) back in the Congress."
The party leader said that Churchill has been instigated by Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar from the BJP to act against the party.
Image: Churchill Alemao with daughter Valanka