Arithmetic, Not Love Jihad, Explains BJP’s Reverses

Over the last few weeks, the newly anointed BJP president, Amit Shah, has been the recipient of unsolicited and incessant sermonising from pundits of civil society about the reasons for the BJP’s lacklustre performance in the recent by-elections. There is unprecedented unanimity among political observers that the BJP’s straying from the theme of development in … Continued

Rural India Continues To Outvote Urban India

  In one of our pre-election reports, we looked at 20 most rural and urban constituencies to understand voting patterns.   We also looked at the difference in percentage points in the highest and lowest rural and urban voter participation.   The 2014 elections saw a record voter turnout of 66% as against 58% in … Continued

How Many Murderers Are We Electing To Parliament?

India has a large proportion of criminals in politics who also get elected through the democratic process.   The latest statistics following the recent Lok Sabha elections stand like this: there are 186 Members of Parliament (MPs) who have criminal cases against them, nearly 34% of the total elected MPs. This number is the highest … Continued

Women Outvoted Men in 16 States/UTs

More women are turning out to vote, mostly to elect men it would appear. While there are only 61 women Members of Parliament in the 16th Lok Sabha, women voters turned out in large numbers across the country to exercise their franchise in the just concluded parliamentary elections.   Over 260 million women voters exercised … Continued

The MPs With The Most Profitable Stints In Government

Is a stint in politics profitable?   Depends on how you define profitable. If it’s in money terms, the answer is yes. Not to say that the earnings accrued from their being politicians or their specific roles but many politicians saw their wealth multiply quite sharply in the last five years.   This is also … Continued

South India To Congress Rescue….Again

Is it time for the Congress leadership to listen to politicians from Karnataka and Kerala? In an election when the party could not win even a single seat in almost 8 states, Karnataka has elected nine Congress MPs and Kerala eight Congress MPs.  Out of the 44 elected Congress MPs, that is nearly 39%.   … Continued

Indian Elections: Debunking The Debunked Myths

“Survey shatters 5 Indian election myths” read a Financial Times headline in its characteristically emphatic style. The motivation for the headline was a survey carried out by the Centre for Advanced Studies of India at the University of Pennsylvania and Carnegie Endowment that presumably busted some purported myths based on voter surveys and data analysis. After listening to the … Continued

How Kerala Has India’s Highest Spending Inequity

India’s most progressive state on social development indicators also suffers the worst consumer expenditure inequity anywhere in the country.   Feted across the world for achieving developed world levels of social development, the southern state of Kerala has one of the highest monthly per capita consumer expenditure in India, both in rural and urban areas. … Continued