Rajasthan records 62.5 % polling in fifth phase 

Voters show their ID cards as they wait in a queue at a polling station, during the fifth phase of Lok Sabha elections, in Nagaur district. PTI photo

A voter turnout of 63.2 per cent was recorded till 5 pm on Monday in 12 Lok Sabha seats in Rajasthan where two former Olympians are among the 134 candidates in the fray.

Polling began at 7 am in Ganganagar (SC), Bikaner, Churu, Jhunjhunu, Sikar, Jaipur rural, Jaipur, Alwar, Bharatpur, Karauli-Dholpur, Dausa and Nagaur seats.
 
The website of the chief electoral officer of Rajasthan stated that the overall polling percentage in the 12 seats till 5 pm was 63.02 per cent. In the first phase held on April 29, around 68.5 % polling was recorded in 13 constituencies.
 
A total of 2.30 crore voters across these 12 constituencies are eligible to decide the fate of the 134 candidates, among whom 16 are women. As many as 23,738 polling stations have been set up in the state for the fifth phase of the Lok Sabha elections.
 
Out of 12 Lok Sabha constituencies, Jaipur Rural, Bikaner, Dausa and Alwar are some of the keenly-watched constituencies. In Jaipur rural, Olympian shooter Rajyawardhan Rathore and discus thrower Krishna Poonia have locked horns. While Singh is banking on Modi's clout and Rajput votes, Poonia on the other side is relying on Jat community she hails from. The constituency is dominated by Jat voters. Caste equation plays an important role here. 
 
The second interesting seat is Nagaur constituency which again sees a division of Jat vote bank in the constituency. Here, Congress has fielded Jyoti Mirdhi, who was an MP in 2009 as well. She is the granddaughter of Nathu Ram Mirdha a tall stalwart in Jat community. To give a befitting reply, BJP has fielded its alliance partner Hanuman Beniwal of RLP, who also has a good fan following among Jats.
 
The third interesting yet crucial seat is Alwar, infamous for three alleged lynchings of dairy farmers over suspicions of cow smuggling — is set to witness a tough battle between erstwhile royal and former Union minister Bhawar Jitendra Singh and Mahant Balaknath of the Rohtak-based Asthal Bohar Math.

Congress is banking on Schedule caste, Muslims and also trying to make inroads in the Yadav vote bank who has traditionally been supporters of BJP. 
 
In Dausa, both the BJP and the Congress candidates are women. While the saffron party has fielded former MP Jaskaru Meena, the Congress has given the ticket to Savita Meena, the wife of party MLA Murari Meena.

Rajasthan has 25 Lok Sabha seats, of which 13 had gone to the polls in the fourth phase on April 29. In the fifth phase of polling 134 candidates, including 16 women, are in the fray.
 
In 12 constituencies 23,783 polling stations were set up.

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