Jasdan (Gujarat), Dec 23 : The counting for Jasdan by-poll in Gujarat, which is being seen as the 'battle of prestige' for both ruling BJP as well as main opposition Congress, is being held here amid tight security.
During the first 3 rounds of the counting that begun at 8 am this morning, BJP candidate Kunvarji Bavaliya was leading over his nearest rival Avsar Nakiya of Congress by a margin of over 2700 votes.A total of 71.23% of the total 2,32,616 voters of this constituency had exercised their franchise on December 20 during the by poll.
Returning Officer Amit H Chaudhary has said that the counting is being held in Model school in here. It would be held in 19 rounds. 'The result is expected to be declared by 1230 pm,' he added.There were a total of 262 polling booths at 159 locations i.e polling stations for the bypoll. Over one lakh of the voters were women.
There are in all 8 candidates in the fray of whom the two main contestants were from the national parties BJP and Congress, 3 were from other registered parties and as many were independents.BJP candidate and Gujarat Minister Kunvarji Bavaliya, a five time former MLA from this seat who was also Loksabha MP for one term, had resigned from the seat and Congress party on July 3 this year and joined the ruling party the same day.
He was inducted as a minister also that day. He had alleged that Congress was ignoring senior leaders like him. The by-poll was necessitated due to his resignation only. Congress has fielded Avsar Nakiya, who was mentored politically by Bavaliya.Notably Jasdan is deemed as a bastion of Congress where the party had faced defeat only once. Bavaliya claims that it was because of him.
The by-poll is being seen as a war-of-prestige for both BJP and Congress.Bavaliya and Nakiya both belong to majority Koli community on this seat in Rajkot district.
In the last election on December 9, 2017,Jasdan constituency had recorded a voter turnout of 73.44%. Kunvarji Bavaliya had won it as Congress candidate.
He had got 84321 (49.90%) votes defeating his nearest rival of BJP Bharat K Boghara who had got 75044 (44.41%) votes.(UNI)