The Congress said that the over 70 per cent voting in the first phase of Gujarat polls on Saturday has given it a hope of forming the government in the state, as a “high turnout of voters is a sign of change of power”.

“I thank the 2 crore, 12 lakh people of Gujarat for coming out in huge numbers to vote on Saturday. The high turnout of voters and heavy polling is a sign of changing hands of power from the incumbent government,” said Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala.

“After the first phase of elections, it is clear that winds of change is blowing. With the blessings of the people of Gujarat, Congress will form the government in the state,” he added.

Over 70 per cent voting was registered in Gujarat at close of polling at 5 p.m. in the first phase, though there were still long queues lined up to vote at most polling stations, state chief electoral officer B.B. Swain said.