Manas Dasgupta

GANDHINAGAR: An estimated 58 to 62 per cent of voters cast their votes in the by-elections in seven State Assembly constituencies in Gujarat on Thursday.

The polling was peaceful in all the constituencies.

According to official information, the highest turn-out was recorded in the Dehgam seat in Gandhinagar district, where about 70 to 75 per cent of the voters exercised their franchise, while the lowest was in Chotila constituency in Surendranagar district, where the turn-out was estimated at 52 to 55 per cent.

The by-elections for five seats — Kodinar in Junagadh district, Dhoraji in Porbandar district, Danta in Banaskantha district, Jasdan in Rajkot district, and Dehgam — were caused by resignations by the sitting members on being elected to the Lok Sabha in the recent Parliamentary elections.

The Chotila seat fell vacant after the death of the sitting Congress members, and Sami-Harij in Patan district due to the sitting member Bhavsinh Rathod’s resignation to contest the parliamentary elections.Barring Kodinar, all the other six seats were held by the Congress. Kodinar was held by Dinubhai Solanki of the BJP, who has been elected to the Lok Sabha.

Though 88 candidates are in the fray for the seven seats, the contest will be between the Congress and the BJP nominees. The by-elections are considered vital for Chief Minister Narendra Modi to test his popularity after the party’s not-so-impressive showing in the parliamentary elections