Panaji: 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 denial of 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 10 minutes trying to convince him about his step, before finally putting down the papers.
Fernandes told Alemao that the decision of allotting ticket is clearly mandate of 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 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 (MLA).
He said that the Congress will lose 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 “Congress is a vast ocean”.
The local party leaders, however, were dismayed over the resignation.
"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 Congress."
The party leader said that Churchill has been instigated by BJP Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar to act against the party.
"Churchill is fielded by Parrikar who is arm-twisting him (Churchill) threatening him about the criminal cases pending with the police," Fernandes alleged.