Gujarat bypolls: Counting for 2 LS, 4 Assembly Seats begins

Still Counting!
Ahmedabad, Jun 5: By-election counting for two Lok Sabha and four state Assembly seats had begun on Sunday and is still underway. Counting has begun at four centers of Porbandar, Panchmahal, Limbadi, and Banaskantha for all the seats and results are expected by afternoon, officials said.

Early trends, during the first hour of the counting, suggested that BJP candidates were leading in two Lok Sabha and three Assembly seats against their nearest Congress rivals. "BJP candidates are leading in two Lok Sabha seats of Porbandar and Banaskantha and three Assembly seats of Jetpur, Limbadi, and Dhoraji," a top state Election official said.

For Morva Hadaf (ST) Assembly seat, counting has slowed down due to some technical glitches, he further added. The by-election is considered as a litmus test for Congress as all six seats were held by it. Both the main political parties in the state- the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress-have expressed confidence on winning majority of seats even though this by-elections did not draw many voters.

For Porbandar and Banaskantha Lok Sabha seats, 30 and 37 per cent voting was registered, respectively. However, for the assembly seats of Limbadi, Morva Hadaf, Dhoraji, and Jetpur 62 per cent, 64 per cent, 33 per cent, and 45 per cent voting was recorded.

All eyes are on results of Porbandar Lok Sabha and Jetpur Assembly seats where BJP has given tickets to Vithhal Radadia and his son Jayes, respectively, who had defected from the Congress and joined BJP. On Limbadi and Morva Hadaf Assembly and Banaskantha Lok Sabha seat, Congress  fielded relatives of candidates who held those seats before the bypoll.

Banaskantha Lok Sabha seat fell vacant after the death of Congress MP Mukesh Gadhvi. His wife Krishna Gadhvi is now contesting the elections.

At Morva Hadaf, the election was held to fill the vacancy due to the death of Congress candidate Savita Khant in December last year on the day of the counting of the assembly elections. For the by-poll, the party had given ticket to her son Bhupendrasinh Khant.

The Limbadi Assembly seat fell vacant after Congress MP Soma Patel, who won the seat, later resigned as MLA. The party has fielded his son Satish against whom BJP has given a ticket to former state minister Kiritsinh Rana.

In the state legislative Assembly of 182 members, at present BJP has 115 MLAs, Congress 57, Nationalist Congress Party(NCP) 2, Gujarat Parivartan Party (GPP) 2 and Independent and JD(U) has one member each.


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