In Rajasthan, record voting of 68.40%

People wait in queues to cast their vote at a polling station at Sirohi district in Rajasthan. (Reuters Photo)

The desert state of Rajasthan has registered record polling, with 68.40% voter turnout across 28,182 polling stations. The turnout is 4% higher than in 2014.

Out of the 13 constituencies that went to polls on Monday, in Jodhpur — which saw Vaibhav Gehlot of Congress battle Gajendra Singh Shekhawat of BIP — voter turnout crossed 67% — 5% more than 2014.

The constituency that witnessed the lowest turnout was Ajmer, at 63%. In 2014, Ajmer had recorded 68% voting. 

In the morning, one hour into polling, the voter turnout was at 13% in the state. It rose to 29% by 11 am. Among the prominent voters were Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, who voted with his wife Sunita and son Vaibhav, and Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje and her son Dushyant Singh.

Around 30 complaints of EVM glitches were recorded in the early hours of voting, including in Pali, Devli in Tonk, Bhinai in Ajmer and Chohtan in Barmer district. 

In Jhalawar, polling booths experienced power cut for hours. The issue was raised by Dushyant who alleged that the state administration had deliberately wanted to reduce the polling percentage in the district. Acting on it, District Collector Sidharth Sihag addressed the power failure at Topkhana school in half an hour.

Other leaders who voted early included Union Minister of State Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, BJP MLA Gulab Singh Kataria, former state minister Kiran Maheshwari, erstwhile prince of Mewar Lakshyaraj Singh and his father Maharana Arvind Singh.

Speaking to media Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said "Vaibhav Gehlot's winning would connect the Centre and the state and thus ensure better and speedy development in Jodhpur."

Meanwhile, Union Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore expressed confidence after seeing the record voting percentage in state. While campaigning in Jaipur rural, he said, "People want to bring back Narendra Modi as prime minister". 

The polling took place amid tight security arrangements from 7 am to 6 pm on Monday in 13 of total 25 constituencies. 

Remaining 12 constituencies — Sriganganagar, Bikaner, Churu, Jhunjhuju, and Sikar, Jaipurrural, Jaipur, Alwar, Bharatpur, Karauli-Dholpur, Dausa and Nagaur — will go to polls on May 6. 

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