The final voter turnout in the first phase of the Gujarat elections stood at 66.75%, the Election Commission said on December 10.
The poll panel on December 9 declared an estimated 68% voter turnout . In the 2012 elections, 71.32% voter turnout was recorded in Gujarat for all the 182 seats. The 89 seats that went to polls on December 9 are in the Saurasthra, Kutch and South Gujarat regions.
The EC on December 9 said it would announce the final figures the day after since the process of collecting and tabulating the poll data from the 19 districts was not finished till late evening.
Out of 2.12 crore voters in the regions, 1.41 crore exercised their franchise in the 89 seats in 19 districts, according to a release issued by the office of the Chief Electoral Officer for Gujarat.
According to the final data released on December 10, tribal-dominated Narmada district witnessed the highest turnout at 79.15% while Devbhumi-Dwarka seat in the Saurashtra region saw the lowest turnout at 59.39%. While 12 districts recorded a voter turnout of less than 70%, seven registered the polling percentage of 70%, it said.
Narmada district comprises Dediapada and Nandod constituencies — both reserved seats currently held by the BJP. BJP MLA Motilal Vasava is fighting against Mahesh Vasava, son of rebel JD(U) leader Chhotubhai Vasava in the Dediapada seat. Mr. Vasava is contesting as the candidate of the Bhartiya Tribal Party (BTP), floated by his father ahead of elections.
In Dwarka constituency, the main fight is between the BJP and the Congress.
Prominent candidates in the first-phase poll battle included Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and Congress’s Shaktisinh Gohil and Paresh Dhanani.
The second and final phase of elections for remaining 93 seats will be held on December 14. The votes will be counted on December 18.