A voter turnout of 24.35 per cent was recorded in the first four hours of polling in 25 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat in the third phase of the general election on Tuesday, an official from the Election Commission (EC) said. As many as 265 candidates are in the fray for 25 out of 26 Lok Sabha seats in the state.

The BJP bagged the Surat seat unopposed after eight out of nine eligible candidates withdrew their nomination forms. BJP candidate Mukesh Dalal was declared the winner.

"An average 24.35 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the first four hours of polling, which began at 7 am," the official said.

As per the data shared by the EC, the Banaskantha constituency in North Gujarat recorded the highest turnout of 30.27 per cent, while the Porbandar seat in the Saurashtra region saw the lowest turnout of 19.83 per cent between 7 am and 11 am.

Voters turned up in large numbers at polling booths in the early hours, as long serpentine queues could be seen outside several booths.

Also read: LS elections third phase: Average voter turnout of over 25% in first 4 hours of polling

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel and Chief Electoral Officer for Gujarat, P Bharathi were among the early voters.

While PM Modi cast his vote at Nishan School in the Ranip area of the city, Shah exercised his franchise at a polling booth in the Naranpura area, both of which fall under the Gandhinagar Lok Sabha seat from where Shah has been renominated.

According to poll officials, the state has 4.97 crore voters, including 2.56 crore males, 2.41 crore females and 1,534 persons from the third gender.

Of the 50,788 polling booths, 17,275 are in the urban areas and 33,513 in rural parts of the state, they said.

In Gujarat, Union Home Minister Amit Shah is in the fray from Gandhinagar, while his cabinet colleagues Mansukh Mandaviya and Parshottam Rupala are contesting from Porbandar and Rajkot seats, respectively.

Voting is also being held for the bypolls for five state assembly seats of Khambhat, Vijapur, Waghodia, Porbandar, and Manavadar.

The Congress is fighting the Lok Sabha polls in alliance with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), hoping to prevent a division of opposition votes to stop the BJP from repeating its winning streak of 2014 and 2019.

As part of the alliance, the Congress, which has fielded four sitting and eight former MLAs, got 24 seats (including Surat), while the AAP has been given Bhavnagar and Bharuch.