Counting would start at sharp eight in the morning in 37 centres amid unprecedented security cover in the 33 districts of the state and no one would be allowed to carry a mobile set inside the counting rooms, a CEO spokesperson said today. Out of 4.08 crores electors 75.20 per cent exercised their franchises to elect 199 MLAs in the house of 200 members.
Though exit polls after the elections predicted a near rout for Congress and a good showing for BJP, Gehlot appeared confident of a comfortable majority owing to the several flagship popular schemes during his five-year term in office.
Exit polls have rendered sleepless nights for Congress' contestants
He was also sure of winning against BJP's Rajput candidate Shambhu Singh Khetasar from home turf of Sardarpur in Jodhpur district. With exit polls going their way, BJP's Chief Ministerial candidate Vasundhara Raje was almost sure having an edge over Congress' woman NSUI leader and former MLA Meenakshi Chandrawat from the Jhalarapatan seat in Hadauti region.
In fact, the exit polls have rendered sleepless nights for Congress' contestants including Assembly Speaker Dipendra Singh Shekhawat, its state president Chandrabhan and others including 19 ministers.
BJP's stalwarts and sitting MLAs Gulab Chand Kataria, Ghanshyam Tiwari, Narpat Singh Rajvi (son-in-law of former vice president BS Shekhawat), Siddhi Kumari (Bikaner Royal family member) and new entrant in politics from the Jaipur Royal family member Diya Kumari were anticipating the Modi-factor coupled with Centre's anti-incumbency to win the poll battle.
There were 166 women candidates and one eunuch candidate in the fray. While Congress and BJP have fielded 200 candidates each, the BSP (195), CPI(M)(38), CPI (23), NCP (16), other parties (666) and Independents (758) including the Churu Assembly constituency.