New Delhi:As voting got underway in the Rajasthan Cricket Association election, there has been a scuffle between supporters of the high-profile candidates for the post of president, CP Joshi and Lalit Modi.
Large crowds of unruly supporters of both candidates gathered first inside the venue of the voting and later outside, and clashed. There was much pushing and heckling. But voting went on undisturbed.
IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi had lost the last RCA elections in March this year, but infighting and factionalism in the association led to fresh elections being held on Monday.
Lalit Modi described the clashes as "shameful". He refused to acknowledge that there were his supporters among those who clashed. "I came in with three people and left soon after", he said. He claimed that there was an effort to "intimidate voters".
The other candidate CP Joshi is the Rajasthan Congress president who said that his main concern was love of cricket.
"More or less my main concern is love of cricket. I want to see a conducive environment for cricket in Rajasthan. We have a rich tradition and we have produced a large number of cricketers and I feel that tradition should be maintained", said C P Joshi, Union Rural Development Minister and Congress President.
While Modi, a BCCI vice-President and the commissioner of the cash-rich Indian Premier League, alleged that his supporters were being intimidated and stopped from casting their votes.
"We will have to wait and watch at the end of the day. Some of my supporters are being beaten up and it is unfortunate. We hope for the good of cricket people are allowed to cast their votes. But there are goonda elements out here, who shouldn't be here," he said.
Modi refused to comment on whether the brawl was started by supporters of Joshi.
"I won't comment on that. It's sad that something of this sort is happening in a cricket election. People are being intimidated for no reason. I am really surprised. I think the police has taken control and hope they are able to maintain it".
Besides Modi and Joshi, Shiv Charan Mali, a known loyalist of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has also filed his nomination.
Earlier, the Supreme Court had directed to hold the RCA elections on December 7 with Justice (retired) N M Kasliwal as observer.
On Saturday, C P Joshi and Lalit Modi filed their nomination papers for the post of RCA president for which elections took place today.