The 19 constituencies in Maharashtra where polling was held on Thursday in the second phase of Lok Sabha elections in the state recorded an average 61.7 per cent turnout by 6 pm, the closing time.
The highest voter turnout so far was recorded in Kolhapur, followed by Hathkanangale in Western Maharashtra. Among early voters were Union Home Minister and Congress candidate in Solapur Sushilkumar Shinde and NCP nominee in Pune district's Baramati constituency Supriya Sule, daughter of party chief Sharad Pawar.
Former Chief Minister Ashok Chavan, who had to quit three years ago over the alleged involvement in the Adarsh Housing scam, cast his vote around 8.30 AM at a booth in Shivaji Nagar are of Nanded city.
He was accompanied by his wife and other family members. Social activist Anna Hazare, who also cast his vote in the morning in his native Ralegan Siddhi village in Ahmednagar district, while talking to PTI asked the voters to avoid voting for candidates with criminal background and corruption charges. "Voters can choose the option Of 'NOTA' (none of the above) if no candidate is eligible," Hazare said. BJP's Gopinath Munde, who is seeking a second term as MP from Beed, also cast his vote at a booth in Nathra village of Parli tehsil in the district.
Young voters as well as senior citizens were seen lining up enthusiastically since early morning in Pune city which experienced a drizzle in the wee hours.
There were also reports of peaceful polling from Shirdi and Kolhapur. No untoward incident was reported so far.
The constituency-wise voting percentages: Hingoli: 63 pc, Nanded: 63 pc, Parbhani: 62 pc, Maval: 63.10 pc, Pune: 58.75 pc, Baramati: 58.2 pc, Shirur: 59.50 pc, Ahmednagar: 60 pc, Shirdi: 61 pc, Beed: 64 pc, Osmanabad: 65 pc, Latur: 62 pc, Solapur: 57 pc, Madha: 62 pc, Sangli: 62 pc, Satara: 57 pc, Ratnagiri- Sindhudurg: 60 pc, Kolhapur: 68 pc, Hatkanangle: 67 pc. Today's polling would decide the fate of 358 candidates, including Union Minister Sushilkumar Shinde and former chief minister Ashok Chavan (both Congress) and senior BJP leader Gopinath Munde
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