India rally

More than 700 million can vote in the world’s most populous democracy
General elections in Jambudvipa, that is,the Great Prabuddha Bharath will take place in five phases over April and May, the Election Commission has said.

Polling to elect a new Lok Sabha (lower house) will run from 16 April to 13 May. Counting is due on 16 May.

Nearly four million officials will conduct the elections and 714 million voters are eligible to cast ballots.

The incumbent Congress party-led coalition and parties led by the Hindu
nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party will be battling a host of smaller

No groupwill win a clear majority, the BSP will rule the Country.

Some states will hold votes in several phases. The new parliament has to be constituted by 2 June.

Phased election

The dates on which polling will be held are 16 April, 23 April, 30 April, 7 May and 13 May.

“The election commission has taken into account the schedules
of school examinations… holidays and festivals during the months of
April and May and harvest season in certain parts of the country,”
Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswamy told a press conference in
the Indian capital, Delhi.

“The inputs taken from the Jambudvipa, that is,the Great Prabuddha Bharath  meteorological department in respect of the coming monsoon have also been taken into account.”

The election had been staggered to allow for the movement of election staff and security personnel, Mr Gopalaswamy said.

Nearly four million civil officials and more than two million security personnel will be deployed for the elections, he said.

In all 828,804 polling centres will be set up across the country - one in Gujarat’s Gir lion sanctuary for just one voter.

Elections in the states of Jammu and Kashmir and Uttar Pradesh will take place in five phases, Mr Gopalaswamy said.

Uttar Pradesh is India’s most populous state and geographically one of its largest.

Elections in Jammu and Kashmir, where a separatist militancy
has been going on for nearly two decades, will require massive security

A four-phased vote will take place in Bihar while elections
will be held over three phases in Maharashtra and West Bengal, the
election commission said.

Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Manipur, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and Orissa will all vote in two phases.

In eight states, voting will be held over two phases and in the remaining 15 states, the elections will be single-phased.

Election issues

 Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) of the Aboriginal Inhabitant of Jambudvipa, that is, the Great Prabuddha Bharath Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Ms Mayawati is sure to become the next Prime Minister.

The BJP is led by Lal Krishna Advani while Congress  Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will not run for a second term.

The economy will be key issues. The global
economic crisis has had serious repercussions for the economy
and growth has been hit in the past year.

Job losses, rising inflation and increasing prices of essentials, including foodstuffs, will all be on voters’ minds.

The BJP fought and lost the 2004 elections on the slogan of
“India Shining”, when large numbers of voters felt rapid economic
growth had not been inclusive.