Main Determinants of Voting behaviour in India

IAS Mains General Studies Sample Answers

What are the main determinants of voting behaviour in India?

In the democratic set up voting is essential process. The democratic system has been working smoothly, for the past 60(57) years. Citizens of India enjoy their full freedom and understanding in voting power. Parties try to capture maximum number of votes to come in power. For this they tend to develop and determine the voting behaviour of the voters. Issues related to the daily life such as unemployment, price rise, law & order system and other developmental issues are often influence the vote of common people.Some of the biggest determinants of the voting behaviour.

In India is as follows:

Race: Sometimes and in some regions, yet race plays a role like in North Eastern states, it will be very tough to get elected by any south Indian and so is the case with south India also.

Religion: It is as fact that religion plays a important role especially where both the followers Hindus and Muslims are situated in a constituency. This gave a support to Religion based parties. Though in a secular state like India, it must not be used.

Costism: This is the biggest determinants of the voting behaviour for the past five decades in India. This is the most ancient and widely used factor. Parties give tickets to the candidate of a caste which has the majority in the constituencies.

Regionalism: After 1990s it is getting more and more importance. Demanding separate region, promoting region specific interest, claiming representation to end exploitation etc. are the main emerging causes from regionalism.

Language: Language does not play a big role but at national level but it is deciding factor at state level politics

Charismatic Leaders: Leaders like J. L. Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Jai Prakash Narayan, attract a number of voters due to their personal influence of behaviour, look, style, and ideology.

Ideology: Some political ideologies play a deciding factor like democrats, socialism and communism.

Development: Development factor is practised in developed democracy. It is a sign of old and smooth running democratic system. It is expected that this is the main and desirable factor that should play a big role in determining the voting behaviour.

Incidences: Some important and sudden events and incidences can change the equations in politics.

Cadre: Some of the voters are emotionally attached to the political parties and they vote in the name of the party only.

Individuals: The ability and speciality and of course popularity of the individuals as the candidate also influence the voters.

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