Published: Sat, April 13, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

India poll body watchdog orders Modi TV channel clampdown

India poll body watchdog orders Modi TV channel clampdown

While India's long-maintained policy of dilly-dallying on talks with Pakistan needs no evidences, history is witness to Pakistan always stepping out first, in search of peace with India.

Here's a look at the staggering figures behind the world's second-most populous country's vote, and the sheer manpower needed to hold such a mammoth election.

India votes 2019Which states are headed to the polls?

According to the Pakistani news outlet, protesters gathered outside the polling station to rally against the BJP and the Indian troops, seen by many locals as occupiers.

Hundreds of voters began to queue up outside polling centres early Thursday morning.

Who are they voting for?


The main opposition Congress party chief Rahul Gandhi and his mother Sonia Gandhi are contesting for parliamentary seats from northern Uttar Pradesh state.

India's mostly cash-based economy already suffered at the end of 2016, when Modi announced a sudden recall of 500- and 1,000-rupee cash notes in a bid to reduce corruption; instead, studies now show that India's GDP dropped by as much as 2 percentage points because of that experiment, with farmers and low-income wage earners suffering the most.

Several senior bureaucrats in the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) will be looking for an exit if PM Modi is re-elected after the Lok Sabha polls and returns to power in May, Reuters, the British news agency quoted multiple sources in the administration as saying.

How will India's Election Commission pull it off?

Some 1.1 million electronic voting machines are being taken around the country for the votes, with some transported through jungles and carried up mountains, including to a hamlet near the Chinese border with just one voter. There are 543 seats at stake.Security has been increased after seven people were killed in militant attacks in Kashmir and the east of the country including a state legislator from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ruling party.

In 2009, the election commission set up a polling booth in the Gujarat's Gir forest - home to Asia's only wild lions - for a single voter. What the people of these two countries need are economic reforms, better education and health facilities, and more employment and stability in the region.

Congress is a secular, socialist party that has pledged to protect India's minorities and improve life for the poor. But, there lies the chance of other parties' alliance against Modi's BJP till the last phase of elections scheduled on May 19.

Aakriti Bachhawat, a researcher at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), told the ABC these voters could have a major impact on the outcome.

A BJP delegation, including Sitharaman, Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and its media head Anil Baluni, submitted to the EC a memorandum in which the saffron party also accused the Trinamool Congress (TMC) of poll rigging in West Bengal during the first phase of polling of the general election on Thursday. Such things have been said in the past by analysts and even by politicians but after an nearly war-like situation with India, comments like this coming from a Pakistani premier would certainly be misconstrued. And such satisfaction is highly partisan: 75 percent of BJP supporters are satisfied with how Indian democracy functions, compared with only 42 percent of Congress backers.

Khan said other parties would be afraid of right-wing backlash in case of a settlement on the Kashmir issue.

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