50% turnout in Rajasthan polls so far, violence reported

Jaipur: About 50% of the voters cast their votes till 1.30 PM in 129 civic bodies in the state even as an incident of violence was reported from Fatehpur where miscreants broke two EVM machines, a top official of Rajasthan State Election Commission (RSEC) said.

Two EVM machines were damaged partially but its data was saved after miscreants tried to enter booth number 29 at Fatehpur in Sikar district, RSEC Ram Lubhaya told PTI. The EVMs were replaced and polling began on peaceful note there, the Commissioner said. About 50 per cent of the electorate voted till 1:30 PM after polling began at 7 AM, Lubhaya said.

Polling at 4,300 booths in 3,306 wards in 129 municipal bodies in the state will continue till 5 PM, he further said. Voting began on a slow note because of rains in parts of the state but it picked up later, he added. A total of 10,582 candidates are in the fray. Out of 37.12 lakh voters, 17.77 lakh are women.

About 1,300 booths fall in sensitive and hyper-sensitive category in the election which is likely to see a neck and neck contest between ruling BJP and Congress. Over 43,000 security personnel including state police, homeguards, and Rajasthan Armed Constabulary (RAC) have been deployed to ensure free and fair polls, a senior official said.

About 30 companies of RAC have been put on standby to meet any exigency and there would be one mobile party at every booth in 129 civic bodies, he said. A magistrate-led mobile party would also be patrolling the area for conducting peaceful elections, the official added.