DUMBSTRUCK: Churchill, Joaquim and Yuri at the counting centre after their defeat in the hustings
MARGAO: Gloom descended at the Varca residence of the Alemao’s as the Alemao family suffered a complete rout in the elections, triggering jubilations in the rival camps.
Blame it on family raj or simple people’s power, all four members of the Alemao family — PWD Minister Churchill Alemao, Urban Development Minister, Joaquim Alemao, Valanka and Yuri — bit the dust in the hustings.
At the counting centre, the Alemao camp was hit by despondency as results went against their favour one by one. First, it was Joaquim Alemao, who left the counting hall along with son Yuri, when trends in Cuncolim constituency, revealed the worst. As Joaquim-Yuri were huddled together, came another bad news — about the defeat of Valanka.
Valanka put up a brave face saying that her defeat cannot be attributed to family raj, but at the same time said it was difficult to digest the news of her defeat since there was a Valanka wave in Benaulim. But, she made it clear that she would continue her role in politics.
Incidentally, while the stakes appeared down, hopes were raised in the Alemao camp as news started trickling from the counting hall that Yuri was enjoying a slender lead in Sanguem. The joy, however, was short lived as the BJP finally got the better off Yuri and won the seat by a slender margin of 483 votes.
The big blow came after Avertano Furtado took an unassailable lead in Navelim, completing the rout. Churchill, Joaquim, Yuri and the entire Alemao clan were huddled in the corridors of the counter centre for some time, before they walked out together as they were booed and jeered by their opponents outside.
“I don’t think family raj has resulted in our defeats. There’s no explanation. The people have given their mandate,” Joaquim said. Churchill could not believe the news that all four candidates were rejected in the hustings and declined to comment whether family raj contributed to their defeat.
As news of the defeat of the family spread, supporters of the Alemao’s, including elected representatives, thronged their residence later in the evening to take stock of the situation.