New Delhi/Ahmedabad: Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday notched victory in his Maninagar constituency beating rival Shweta Bhatt, the wife of suspended police officer Sanjeev Bhatt, by more than 70,000 votes.

Amid talk that he could be the BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate with another victory, Modi remarked it was time to move 'forward'. "No need of looking behind ...FORWARD...We want infinite energy, infinite courage, infinite patience..." Modi said on the microblogging site Twitter.

"Modi bhai has always been an important leader in the BJP... We are not a dynastic party which is led by a ‘Yuvaraj’. We function in a pure democratic fashion," BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

Modi, 62, has ruled Gujarat since October 2001 when he replaced incumbent Chief Minister Keshubhai Patel. He became Gujarat's longest serving Chief Minister in July 2007 when he completed 2,063 days in office. In December 2007, he led the BJP to victory for the second time in a row.

Amit Shah wins

Amit Shah, former Gujarat minister and an accused in the Soharabuddin Sheikh and Tulsi Prajapati staged shootout cases, won from his constituency. Shah, who contested from Naranpura constituency in Ahmedabad, won by over 30,000 votes.

He won the last time from the Sarkhej assembly constituency, with a margin of over 2.50 lakh votes.

Known to be a close aide of Chief Minister Narendra Modi, Shah has returned to Gujarat after a gap of two years on the Supreme Court's clearance after it had banished him from the state.

Although there were 10 candidates contesting for the Naranpura seat, it was a direct fight between Shah and Jeetubhai Patel of the  Congress.

(JPN/Agencies)

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