Gujarat Civic Polls 2021 LIVE Updates: Voting underway, 2,276 candidates in fray

Gujarat Civic Body Polls 2021 LIVE Updates: The elections, which are being conducted in Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot, Bhavnagar, and Jamnagar, are being seen as a litmus test for the Vijay Rupani-led BJP government in the state before the Assembly elections next year.

Gujarat Civic Polls 2021 news LIVE Updates: Six major cities of Gujarat will vote for the civic body polls on Sunday amid strict security and Covid-19 protocols. The elections, which are being conducted in Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot, Bhavnagar, and Jamnagar, are being seen as a litmus test for the Vijay Rupani-led BJP government in the state before the Assembly elections next year.

Voting began at 7 am on Sunday and is expected to wrap by 5 pm. Votes will be cast for a total of 575 seats with each ward having four corporators, and 2,276 candidates. The BJP has fielded a maximum of 577 candidates, followed by 566 from the Congress. The Aam Aadmi Party has fielded 470 candidates.

A total of 444 candidates from other parties, including 91 from NCP, are also in the fray along with 228 independents. Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM will make its local bodies poll debut having fielded 21 candidates in six wards in Ahmedabad.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah will also cast his vote in Naranpura ward of Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation, the Gujarat BJP said in a release on Saturday.

The counting of votes will take place on February 23.

Gujarat Civic Body polls: Voting will be held in six municipalities — Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot, Bhavnagar, and Jamnagar — from 7 am to 5 pm. Follow all the latest updates here.

Voting for Gujarat local body elections is underway. Below are some visuals from Ahmedabad. (ANI)

Ahmedabad: Delhi’s Deputy Chief minister Manish Sisodia and other AAP leaders wave to their supporters during a road show ahead of Civic body elections in Ahmedabad, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021. (PTI Photo)

Union Home Minister Amit Shah will also cast his vote in Naranpura ward of Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation, the Gujarat BJP said in a release on Saturday. CM Vijay Rupani, who tested positive for coronavirus during the campaign, is also likely to vote in his hometown Rajkot after getting discharged from the hospital.

During the campaign, the BJP played the “development” card, while the Congress, which has been out of power in these local bodies for a long time now, cited “lack of amenities” and the recent fuel price hike to turn the tide. Meanwhile, AAP has claimed it would be an effective alternative to the BJP and Congress.

Following the civic polls to six municipalities, polls to 31 districts and 231 taluka panchayats as well as 81 municipalities will be held on February 28.

Meanwhile, the Congress and the BJP workers allegedly clashed Friday, the last day for campaigning as supporters of the two parties came face to face during rallies at ward number 16 in Vadodara.

The Gujarat High Court rejected a plea moved by Anand district panchayat members affiliated to Congress, seeking a uniform date for declaration of results for the elections to municipal corporations, taluka panchayats and municipalities. The court observed it was not possible for the State Election Commission (SEC) to control the minds of voters from being influenced by several factors and that the SEC should avoid taking a certificate from any court that ‘Rome burned while Nero fiddled’.

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