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20 per cent voter turnout in first three hours in Gujarat

Polling began in Gujarat's 26 Lok Sabha constituencies, including Gandhinagar from where the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) prime ministerial candidate LK Advani is seeking re-election.

india Updated: Apr 30, 2009 12:30 IST

About 20 per cent of Gujarat's voters exercised their franchise in the first three hours of polling in all 26 Lok Sabha constituencies in the state Thursday, poll officials said.

Chief Minister Narendra Modi cast his ballot at 9 am at a booth in Ranip, under the Gandhinagar Lok Sabha constituency.

Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) prime ministerial aspirant LK Advani is the party candidate from Gandhinagar.

"The cities of Vadodara and Surat had a higher turnout of voters between 7 am and 8 am than Ahmedabad and Rajkot. By 10 a.m., voting picked up momentum in all cities and towns including Bhavnagar and Bhuj taking the tally to 20 percent," an election official said in Ahmedabad.

So far peaceful polling has been reported in the state, which is witnessing unprecedented security arrangements.

More than 30 per cent turnout was recorded by 10 am in rural areas of north and south Gujarat while the turnout was only 15 percent in the rural areas of western and central Gujarat.

Modi, who was accompanied by a large number of BJP supporters, told reporters after voting that "people of Gujarat will ensure that the BJP wins the Lok Sabha poll with a thumping majority in the country".

"We will ensure that senior BJP leader LK Advani wins with a big majority of votes in Gujarat," the chief minister added.

First Published: Apr 30, 2009 09:02 IST