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Polling continues on dull note

Polling started on a dull note in the desert state of Rajasthan on Monday, with pundits predicting a close fight between ruling Cong and the Bharatiya Janata Party.

india Updated: Dec 01, 2003 12:02 IST

Polling started at 8 a.m. on a dull note in the desert state of Rajasthan on Monday, with pundits predicting a close fight between the ruling Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). It remained lacklustre till at least three hours after the polling began.

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Tight security arrangements have been made across the state, with 74,000 police and paramilitary personnel deputed to maintain law and order in the state.

Some 8,900 polling booths out of the 35,705 have been declared "sensitive" and "extremely sensitive" in the state.

Around 33.9 million voters are eligible to cast their votes to decide the fate of 1,541 candidates in the fray for the 200-seat Rajasthan assembly.

The Congress is contesting on all 200 seats while the BJP has fielded candidates in 197, leaving three for allies.

The Indian National Lok Dal, Rashtriya Lok Dal, Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party and Samajik Nayaya Manch are also in the fray.

First Published: Dec 01, 2003 11:15 IST