Polling in second and final phase across 93 constituencies in 14 districts of Gujarat will be held on Thursday. A total of 851 candidates are in the fray in the final phase of the polls where 2.22 crore people are eligible to exercise their franchise. As per the Election Commission schedule, voting will begin at 8 am and conclude at 5 pm. FULL COVERAGE ON GUJARAT ASSEMBLY ELECTIONS
Requesting people to vote in record numbers, PM Narendra Modi said, “Today is Phase 2 of the Gujarat elections. I request all those voting today to vote in record numbers and enrich this festival of democracy.” The prime minister will be casting his vote at Nishan Vidyalaya in Ranip area of Ahmedabad, while BJP chief Amit Shah will be in the city to cast his vote from his former state assembly constituency, Naranpura. Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley will cast his vote from Vejalpur region of Ahmedabad.
Prominent candidates in the fray for today’s battle include state deputy chief minister Nitin Patel, who is contesting from Mehsana against Jivabhai Patel of Congress. Alpesh Thakor, who joined the Congress, is seeking election from Radhanpur constituency. Lavingji Thakor of the BJP is contesting against him.
HERE ARE THE LIVE UPDATES:
06:45 am: Elections will be held in Banaskantha, Patan, Sabarkantha, Mehsana, Gandhinagar, Ahmedabad, Aravalli, Mahisagar, Panchmahal, Dahod, Kheda, Anand, Vadodara and Chhota Udepur districts.
06:40 am: Gujarat elections, being viewed as precursor to the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, are a prestige battle for Modi, who helmed the campaign for the ruling BJP in his home state, and a litmus test for Gandhi, who spearheaded the campaign for the Congress.
06:39 am: A total of 25,575 polling booths have been set up in 14,523 places.
06:38 am: The electioneering for the second phase concluded on November 12 after Modi took a seaplane ride from the Sabarmati river in Ahmedabad to Dharoi Dam in north Gujarat, and returned after offering prayers at the famous Ambaji Temple and holding a road show.
06:37 am: On the concluding day of the campaign, Congress president-designate Rahul told reporters that there was “tremendous undercurrent” against the ruling BJP in Gujarat and predicted a victory for his party in the Assembly polls. He claimed that “public mood” had undergone a radical change with all sections of society angry with the saffron party.
6:36 am: The first phase of voting for the 182-member house, held on December 9, that covered 89 seats saw a 66.75 per cent turnout.
6:35 am: The first phase of elections in 89 constituencies on Saturday saw a 66.75 per cent turnout. The maximum voting (79.15 per cent) was seen in the tribal district of Narmada, followed by Tapi with 78.56 per cent, and the minimum (59.39 per cent) recorded in Devbhoomi Dwarka district. The counting of votes will be taken up on December 18.
6:34 am: In the 2012 assembly polls, the BJP had won 115 seats, while the Congress bagged 61.