20.9% voters’ turnout recorded till 11 am

Voting for the first phase of Gujarat Assembly elections began on Saturday.
AHMEDABAD: Voting for the first phase of Gujarat Assembly elections, covering 89 constituencies of the Saurashtra and South Gujarat regions, began at 8 am on Saturday.
A total of 977 candidates are in the fray and around 2.12 crore voters are expected to exercise their franchise.
The ruling BJP, making a bid for a fifth term, and the Congress, attempting an electoral revival, are the main contenders.
The second phase for the remaining 93 seats of the high-stakes election will be held on December 14. Gujarat has 182 assembly constituencies. The counting of votes will take place on December 18.
Big names to have cast their votes include Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel, state BJP chief Jitubhai Vaghani and cricketer Cheteshwar Pujara.
Polling percentage till 10 am.
A voting percentage of 9.77 was recorded in first two hours of polling.
Some EVMs have been replaced due to some issues: Election Commission
Surat, the diamond and textile hub of Gujarat, is a BJP stronghold and has 12 seats. The polls here are being seen as a referendum on notes ban and GST.
Reports of malfunctioning EVMs rock Surat.
Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel casts his vote in Bharuch’s Ankleshwar, says ‘Congress will win more than 110 seats’.
A faulty EVM in Sardar Patel Vidyalaya booth in Surat’s Varaccha has been replaced.
Surat, the diamond and textile hub of Gujarat, has 12 seats and a BJP stronghold, it is being seen as a referendum on notes ban and GST.
Voting underway on Surat’s Kamrej assembly seat. BJP’s Zalavadiya Vinubhai Dahyabhai is up against Congress’s Ashok Jirawala.
Did you know the Saurashtra region, which is home to the influential Patels or Patidars, is a major political battleground and its verdict could make or break the electoral fortunes of a party.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged the voters, particularly the youngsters, to cast their votes in the assembly elections.
Gujarat’s Saurashtra and Kutch regions which are voting in the first phase have the maximum number of constituencies and are crucial to give parties a good head start.
“We are going to win 150+ seats under the leadership of PM Modi ji, we face no obstacles,” asserts Jitu Vaghani, BJP Gujarat Chief and candidate from Bhavnagar West, after casting his vote.
I appeal to the people of Gujarat to make this festival of democracy successful by voting in large numbers: Rahul
The participation of voters is the soul of democracy. I congratulate the young colleagues who are voting for the first time in Gujarat elections, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet message after the polling started.
A total of 27,158 EVMs are being used in 24,689 polling stations in the first phase of Gujarat Assembly Elections.
Voting underway on Surat’s Choryasi assembly seat. Here BJP’s Jhankhnaben Patel is up against Congress’s Yogeshbhai B. Patel.
BJP Gujarat chief Jitubhai Vaghani casts his vote in Bhavnagar.
The first phase of polling, covering 89 constituencies, spreads across 19 districts. While the ruling BJP holds the maximum of 67 seats, the Congress 16, and the remaining seats are held by smaller parties and Independents.
The maximum candidates contesting on a seat from Jamnagar Rural are 27, while minimum are 3 from Jhagadia and Gandevi.

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