Wednesday, March 5, 2014

India to hold general elections from April 7

India will hold general elections in 9 stages between April 7th and May 12th. With over 800 million eligible voters, the elections will be the world's largest.

India's election commission announced on Wednesday that polling will take place in 543 electoral districts across the country. The votes will be counted on May 16th.

More than 810 million eligible voters are expected to cast their ballots. The number of voters has increased by 100 million from the previous elections 5 years ago.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has expressed his intention to step down after serving 2 terms over the past 10 years. A new leader is expected to fill the post after the elections.

The governing National Congress Party is rallying support for Rahul Gandhi, the party's vice president and heir to the country's Nehru-Gandhi political dynasty.

The largest opposition Bharatiya Janata Party has nominated Narendra Modi as its candidate. He is the chief minister of the western state of Gujarat.

Pre-election polls suggest the National Congress Party will face an uphill battle against the backdrop of a sluggish economy and soaring commodity prices, as well as a series of corruption scandals.