ANI Photo | Rajasthan Assembly elections: 71.74 pc voter turnout recorded with stray incidents of violence

As the polling for the Rajasthan Assembly elections concluded on Saturday, over 70 per cent voter turnout was recorded with stray incidents of violence.
In Rajasthan, 199 out of 200 seats went to the polls as, due to the death of a Congress candidate in Sriganganagar’s Karanpur seat, Gurmeet Singh Koonar the election in this constituency was adjourned.
The state saw a polling percentage of 71.74 per cent of voter turnout, according to latest data from Election Commission.
In the last assembly elections in 2018, the state recorded a voter turnout of 74.06 per cent.
As per the poll body, Tijara witnessed the voter turnout of 85.15 per cent. Tonk recorded 68.55 per cent.
The capital city- Jaipur, recorded 72.70 per cent of voter turnout, while Jaisalmer recorded 82.37 per cent, Jhalawar at 78.15 per cent, Hanumangarh at 81.35 per cent, and 69.56 per cent of electorates cast votes at Jalore by 6 pm.
Voting at a total of 51,507 polling stations in the assembly constituencies began at 7 am and ended at 6 pm, but officials said all the voters who had reached the booth premises by this time will be allowed to vote.
The state recorded 9.77 per cent voter turnout at 9.30 am, but it picked up pace by 6 pm.
A total of 68.24 per cent electorates cast their votes till 5 pm, the Election Commission informed.
Incidents of heavy stone pelting were reported in Sikar on the polling day. But Rajasthan Police clarified that there is no hindrance to voting and that people should come out and vote.
Earlier in the day, a scuffle broke out at a polling booth in Sardarshahar assembly constituency.
Councillor representative Asif Khokhar alleged that he was assaulted by around five to seven people. A heavy police force arrived at the ‘Rajkiya Anjuman Vidyalaya’ polling booth after receiving information about the fight.
A total of 5,26,90,146 voters are registered in the state, while 1,862 candidates are in the fray.
Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, former chief minister Vasundhara Raje and former Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot exercised their franchise at their respective polling booths.
Among all the constituencies, all the eyes are on Sardarpura, Tonk, Jhalarapatan, Nathdwara, Jhunjhunu, Jhotwara, and Churu among others.
Sardarpura is on the list of key constituencies as Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has won this seat since 1998. The Bharatiya Janata Party has fielded Mahendra Singh Rathore from the Congress’ bastion.
The Bharatiya Janata Party candidate and former Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje is contesting from Jhalarapatan. The party’s heavyweight has been winning the seat since 2003 from here. In 2018, she secured 54 per cent votes, defeating then-Congress leader Manvendra Singh, who is now the BJP’s candidate from the Siwana constituency, which was earlier a part of Barmer and is now included in the newly formed Balotra district.
Among the highly discussed seats is Tonk, where Congress’ prominent leader and former Deputy Chief Minister of Rajasthan Sachin Pilot will take on BJP’s Ajit Singh Mehta. In 2018, Pilot defeated the BJP’s Yoonus Khan by a margin of 54,179 votes.
Moreover, Rajasthan Congress president Govind Singh Dotasra has been pitted against BJP’s Subhash Mehria in the Lachhmangarh constituency.
From Udaipur, a BJP’s stronghold since 2003, the fight will be between Tarachand Jain and Congress’ Gourav Vallabh, who has been famous as the Congress party’s national spokesperson.
In Jhotwara constituency, BJP has fielded former Union Minister Rajyavardhan Rathore against Congress’ Abhishek Choudhary. In 2018, Congress candidate Lalchand Katariya defeated Rathore in this seat.
Another key constituency would be Nathdwara, from where the BJP has fielded Vishwaraj Singh Mewar, a descendant of Maharana Pratap Singh, against Congress veteran CP Joshi, the current speaker of the Rajasthan Assembly.
In Jhunjhunu, three-term MLA and Congress leader Brijendra Ola will take on his rival BJP’s Nishit Kumar. In 2018, Ola secured victory with 76,177 votes.
Another key Assembly segment to feature in the list is the Churu constituency, currently represented by the incumbent BJP MLA Rajendra Rathore, who is the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajasthan Assembly.
This time, the BJP has fielded Harlal Saharan from the constituency against Congress’ Rafiq Mandelia.
Notably, the BJP has fielded Rathore from the Taranagar constituency this time.
Moreover, the BJP has decided to field the Lok Sabha MP from Alwar, Mahant Balaknath, from Tijara constituency, against Congress candidate Imran Khan.
Many rebel candidates of BJP and Congress withdrew their names after persuasion.
But still, around 45 rebel candidates from both parties are in the fray. These also include MLAs, former MLAs and party officials.
Jhotwara has the highest 18 candidates, followed by Rajgarh-Laxmangarh and Pushkar with 17 each. The lowest number three are contesting in Lalsot. This time 419 candidates are contesting less as compared to the last election.
Earlier on Friday, Chief Electoral Officer Praveen Gupta said that polling stations have been set up at a total of 36,101 places in the state.
“A total of 10,501 polling stations have been set up in urban areas and 41,006 in rural areas. Live webcasting will be conducted at a total of 26,393 polling stations. These polling centres will be monitored from the district-level control room. Across the state, 65,277 ballot units, 62,372 control units and 67,580 VVPAT machines including reserves will be used for voting,” he had said.
In 2018, the Congress won 99 seats, while the BJP won 73. Gehlot assumed the CM position with the support of BSP MLAs and independents

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