Deepak Lalwani: India Report
Comment of the Day

March 11 2014

Commentary by David Fuller

Deepak Lalwani: India Report

My thanks to the author for this informative report, and here is a sample:

Putting the sheer scale of India's General Election into perspective:

Voting starts on 7 April in 9 phases and ends on 12 May. Results are due on 16 May. Election dates in parliamentary constituencies were set considering extreme summer heat, monsoon rains, harvest seasons, religious festivals and most importantly, school exams (most stations are placed in schools).

It will be the world's biggest exercise of democracy with about 814 mn. registered voters. The 100+ mn. growth since the 2009 election is the equivalent of adding a population larger than the combined ones of the UK, Netherlands, Belgium and Sweden to its electoral rolls in just 5 years.

23 mn. registered voters are aged between 18-19 years old. This represents c.3% of total voters, surging from 0.8% in 2009.

Voters will cast their ballots in c. 930,000 polling stations, 12% more than in 2009.

Indian politicians are expected to spend around US$5 bn. on campaigning for the 2014 elections - triple that spent in 2009. This (according to the Centre of Media Studies) will be the world's second highest, after the most expensive US presidential campaign of $ 7 bn in 2012. 

David Fuller's view

Here is the India Report.

I expect a record voter turnout.  I also think many Indians will regard this as their most important election for at least a decade.  The key question going forward will be the size of Narendra Modi’s election victory, which is not in doubt according to India’s stock market.

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