Gujarat polls: From Ghatlodia to Gandhinagar South, the key constituencies in phase 2
The 93 poll-bound seats in the second and final phase are spread across Ahmedabad, Gandhinagar, Mehsana, Patan, Banaskantha, Sabarkantha, Aravali, Mahisagar, Pachmahal, Dahod, Vadodara, Anand, Kheda and Chhota Udaipur districts.
New Delhi, Dec 05: With over 800 candidates in the fray, voting for the remaining 93 seats spread across central and north districts in Gujarat polls has begun on Monday. Some of the high profile candidates who are in the arena today include Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel from Ghatlodia constituency and Patidar leader Hardik Patel who is taking Congress head on in Viramgam constituency among others. Let us look at some of the key constituencies in the second phase of Gujarat assembly polls.
The Gujarat Assembly has a total of 182 seats. In the second phase, voting is being held in the remaining 93 seats, for which 833 candidates are in the fray from 61 political parties, including the BJP, Congress and the new poll entrant Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). The nominees also include 285 independents, as per the state election body.
Here are the key constituencies in the second phase of Gujarat poll:
Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel is contesting from Ghatlodia Assembly seat. This constituency was carved out from Sarkhej Assembly constituency after 2008 delimitation. It is a segment of Gandhinagar Lok Sabha constituency. In two elections held so far, the BJP has emerged victorious on both the occasions. In 2017, Bhupendra Patel won the seat with 1.17 lakh votes. Congress has fielded Amee Yagnik and AAP has given ticket to Vijay Patel.
Vadgam is reserved for candidates belonging to the Scheduled Castes. It falls under the Patan Lok Sabha constituency. In 2017, Jignesh Mevani won as an independent candidates. Five years later, he has joined Congress and taking on BJP's Manilai Vaghela and AAP's Dalpat Bhatiya.
This seat came into existence after 2008 delimitation. In the two polls held so far, the ruling BJP has emerged victorious in the seat. The saffron party has fielded Alpesh Thakor who will be taking on Congress spokesperson Himanshu Patel and Dolat Patel from AAP. On two earlier occasions, Shambhuji Thakor had won the seat.
All eyes are on this seat as Hardik Patel, who rose to fame with Patidar agitation, has switched sides from Congress to BJP. This is his first election where he is taking on Congress MLA Lakhabhai Bharwad and AAP's Amarsinh Thakor. More importantly, Dalit activist Kiran Rathod is contesting as an independent candidate. Since 1995, the BJP and Congress have won the seats two times, each.
Deodar Assembly constituency is part of Banaskantha district. The key contestant here is AAP Gujarat vice-president Bhemabhai Chaudhary. While BJP has fielded Keshaji Shivaji Chauhan, the Congress has given ticket to Bhemabhai Ragnathbhai Chaudhary.
Jetpur is part of Chhota Udaipur district and is reserved for candidates belonging to the Scheduled Tribes. BJP has fielded Jayantibhai Savjibhai Rathwa and he is taking on Sukhram Rathava and AAP's Radhika Rathava. It has to be noted that the saffron party has won four times in the last five polls. In 2017, Congress' Rathva Sukhrambhai Hariyabhai emerged victorious.
Sukhaji Thakor, farmer activist and former secretary of Khedut Samaj Gujarat (KSG), is contesting the poll from the AAP ticket. He is taking on Bhopaji Thakor and Sagar Rabari.