The General Election that is to be held between April and May in India will be the greatest democratic event in history, with more than 814 million voters called to choose their candidates for the 16th Parliament, the Lok Sabha. The Indian electoral body is greater than the whole population of the USA and Europe put together.
With the inadequate existing infrastructures, elections of this size cannot be held in a single day. Electors are summoned to the polling stations in nine turns, according to the state in which they live, over the five weeks, so as to make it possible for the authorities to run the complicated machinery of the 930,000 polling stations.
Around 10 per cent of electors will be going to the polls for the first time. The population of India is very young: over 65 per cent, or rather, almost 800 million of its 1.3 billion people, are less than 35 years old. This fact gives enormous importance to the social media and the economic themes of the electoral campaign.