As many as 361 candidates have filed their nominations in 11 constituencies, including the high-stakes Baramati and Satara seats, that are going to polls in Maharashtra in the third phase of the Lok Sabha elections 2024 on May 7, officials said, reported news agency PTI.

As per the information provided by the poll authorities, 28 candidates filed their nominations in Raigad seat, 51 in Baramati, 36 each in Osmanabad and Latur, 41 in Solapur, 42 in Madha, 30 in Sangli, 24 in Satara, nine in Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg, 28 in Kolhapur and 36 in Hatkanangale, reported PTI.

Friday was the last day of filing the nominations.

The contest in Baramati is being keenly watched as sitting MP Supriya Sule (NCP – Sharadchandra Pawar) will take on her sister-in-law Sunetra Pawar (NCP).

Kolhapur and Satara have the respective royal scions Shahu Chhatrapati and Udayanraje Bhosale in the fray as Congress and BJP candidates respectively.

Union minister Narayan Rane will be contesting the Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg seat as a BJP candidate, while in Sangli, sitting MP Sanjaykaka Patil of BJP is pitted against wrestler Chandrahar Patil contesting on Shiv Sena (UBT) ticket.

Vishal Patil of the Congress has also filed his nomination as an independent candidate from Sangli. His party is persuading him to withdraw from the race.

Meanwhile, an approximate voter turnout of 61.06 per cent was recorded in Lok Sabha polls held on Friday in Nagpur, Ramtek, Bhandara-Gondiya, Chandrapur and Gadchiroli-Chimur in Maharashtra`s Vidarbha region, though final figures will be updated by Saturday.

The lowest voting was recorded in Nagpur at 54.46 per cent, while it was 69.43 per cent in Gadchiroli-Chimur, 64.08 in Bhandara-Gondiya, 60.35 per cent in Chandrapur and 59.58 per cent in Ramtek,  an official told PTI.

Nagpur, where Union minister and BJP heavyweight Nitin Gadkari is pitted against Congress` Vikas Thakre, had recorded 54.74 per cent voting in 2019.

Among those who voted during the day were Gadkari, Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat, Punjab Governor Banwarilal Purohit as well as Congress leaders Mukul Wasnik and Avinash Pande.

In Chandrapur, the fight is between state BJP minister Sudhir Mungantiwar and the Congress` Pratibha Dhanorkar. She is the wife of late Suresh Dhanorkar, who was the only Congress winner in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. He died last year.

In Bhandara-Gondiya, sitting BJP MP Sunil Mendhe is contesting against Congress` Dr Prashant Patole.

The contest in Gadchiroli-Chimur is between sitting BJP MP Ashok Nete and Congress` Namdev Kirsan, while in Ramtek, Shiv Sena candidate Raju Parwe is up against Congress` Shyam Barve.

(With inputs from PTI)

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