Guj: Exclusive polling booth for Rajput women

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Dhafra (Jamnagar), Dec.12: It"s election time in Gujarat and the Rajput women belonging to the Darbara community in Gujarat"s Jamjodhpur area find themselves privileged to have an all-women polling booth, exclusively set up for them.

Since 1950s, the women of Darbara community have voted only at the all-women polling booth. Since they don"t vote before the male polling officials, a special polling booth had been set up for them at Dhafra in Gujarat"s Jamnagar District."The polling booth for women in Dhafra has total 900 women voters.

Whether it is Gujarat or Rajasthan, members of the Darbara community respect their women. They are very possessive over them. They don't like any person from the other community talking to their women," said Sudarshan Nayak, Election Observer, Jamjodhpur.

“This booth was created during the first elections after independence, and since then there is a separate poll booth for women," he added.

To protect their culture and tradition to maintain the dignity of their women, the Rajputs demanded that the Government provide separate polling booth for women.

"Dhafra is the only place in Gujarat where there is a separate arrangement for women. This way, we are also able to follow our tradition and culture. We feel pride that everybody has supported it and this is very good," said Neetala Parmar, women voter, Dhafra.

For men, however, a separate polling booth has been set up in front of the women's booth.

"The Rajputs demanded separate arrangement for their women by saying that their women will not cast their votes with the men. Then the Government made separate arrangement for them. Such an arrangement does not exist anywhere in Gujarat," said Harilal Joshi, a local of Dafra.

In India, there are two exclusive all women's polling booths, of which one is at Dafran in Gujarat and the other is in Rajasthan.


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