India’s massive elections are in full swing

By Alejandro Freixes, CCNN Head Writer

India's elections
India’s elections run for weeks, as citizens are given an opportunity to weigh in on their favorite candidates in the world’s biggest democratic election.

India’s government elections are taking place from April 7 to May 12, with candidates seeking to win seats in the Parliament of India, which is like the USA’s Congress.

Over 50 parties compete for power in the supreme lawmaking body, but none are as influential as the two major national parties: the leading Indian National Congress (INC) and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

A whopping 814.5 million out of 1.2 billion Indians can vote in this election, as compared to the USA’s average voter turnout of 120 million. Voters will be choosing 543 members of the Lok Sabha, which is the Parliament of India’s lower house. If a party gets a majority, or 272 seats, they can choose the Prime Minister, who leads the executive branch of the Government of India and is chief advisor to the President of India.

In order to get majority control, parties can form coalitions, which are alliances that work together to have greater influence than other coalitions.  The two biggest coalitions are the INC-led United Progressive Alliance and the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance.

The main issue dominating this election is India’s struggling economy, so the BJP is positioning itself as the pro-business choice in order to defeat the INC, who has suffered from a negative public reputation after several corruption scandals. So, get ready for the world’s largest democratic election in the second most populated country, as the BJP faces off against the INC!

Images courtesy of Bharatiya Janata Party.