Posted by Ashish Arya
August 14, 2017

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One popular theory proposes that poor people vote because they are intimidated into doing so . Another theory is that people vote in return for inducements. But recent research across India has shown that those who spend the most do not always win elections and voters do not feel any obligation to vote for those handing out freebies. In fact, they often accept the goodies from all parties but vote for only one.

So people really vote because they are keen to express their support for a particular candidate or party. Using our vote to express our choice  as captured in the Hindi word for vote, matdan — indicates. Several factors determine voter choice and as a current three-year study by an Indo-European network of scholars from the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, London School of Economics, King’s College London and CERI-Sciences Po shows, more and more people vote for development interests rather than merely to support the party that projects their ethnic or caste identity.


Political parties, on their part, tend to get very excited when turnouts are high and hope that a rise in voter numbers will add to their tally. Again, research has shown that historically high percentages in voting do not provide any indication of results and dramatic upsets have been caused both by low turnouts and high ones.


Some institutional factors have, however, contributed to the rise in voter turnouts that we are seeing currently, namely the cleaning up of electoral rolls and the voter enrolment and awareness drives undertaken by the Election Commission. First-time voters are particularly targeted and deceased voters are being removed from lists. In some seats, the votes for NOTA have been larger than the winning margin, thereby determining the result.

The voting can be made easy by linking voting id with online services.

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