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Rajasthan records 52.97 per cent voter turnout till 3 pm

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Press Trust of India Barmer/Jaipur
Rajasthan Monday recorded about 53 percent voter turn out till 3 pm from among its 2.57 crore electorates in the ongoing polling for 13 Lok Sabha seats in the state, said officials.
Barmer, the state's largest parliamentary constituency area-wise, witnessed the highest turnout at 60.36 percent till 3 pm.
The second highest voter turnout after Barmer was reported from tribal population-dominated seat Banswara, where 57.63 per cent electors cast their votes till 3 pm.
In Barmer, where former External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh's son Manvendra Singh, a former BJP MLA, is contesting election as a Congress candidate against BJP's Kailash Chaudhary, voters lined up before polling booths, braving scorching sun with the temperature hovering at around 42 degree Celsius.
The constituency covers entire Barmer and half of Jaisalmer district and is located on Indo-Pak border in western Rajasthan.
Villagers flocked to polling booths in groups and looked for shed near polling booths.
We are waiting for our turn for the last two hours. There is no adequate arrangement of shed and we are suffering from heat but the vote has to be cast, said 79-year old Mangal Singh, a resident of Sonadi village of Barmer.
Women also came out in large number for voting. Some villagers were seen carrying umbrellas to protect themselves from sun.
On his way to a polling booth here, Udaram Jat, 70, said, It's very hot today but voting is important. I am going to the polling booth with umbrella because protection from the heat is equally necessary.
Even election campaigning is considered difficult in this constituency, a part of the Thar desert, where candidates have to travel hundreds of km everyday to reach out to voters living in faraway villages and hamlets.
The constituency, which had recorded 72.56 voter turnout in 2014 general elections, has 19.32 lakh voters.
After Barmer and Banswara, Jodhpur was leading with 56.86 per cent voting at 3 pm.
Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot's son Vaibhav Gehlot is pitted against Union Minister of State and sitting MP Gajendra Singh Shekhawat.
The election of Jodhpur seat has become a prestige issue for Gehlot who has spearheaded a massive poll campaign here for his son, who is contesting his maiden election.
Voting is continuing in 13 constituencies of Tonk-Sawaimadhopur, Ajmer, Pali, Jodhpur, Barmer, Jalore, Udaipur, Banswara, Chittorgarh, Rajsamand, Bhilwara, Kota and Jhalawar-Baran in Rajasthan.

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First Published: Apr 29 2019 | 4:05 PM IST

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