Inside Story

India’s election: what’s at stake?

Nation grapples with huge political issues as it holds the biggest democratic election the world has seen.

The biggest election the world has ever seen is under way in India. The numbers are huge, the challenges considerable, and the issues at stake are immense.

A total of 815 million people are eligible to vote at almost a million polling stations. There are 8,000 candidates representing more than 500 constituencies.

Voting will take place over nine rounds, from April 7 until May 12, with counting expected on May 16.

Domestic attention has been focused on the economy and corruption while Pakistan, China and Afghanistan are on the foreign policy agenda.

But what is at stake in a country dominated by political dynasty and diversity? And will the world’s largest democracy vote for change?

Presenter: Mike Hanna

Guests: Mohan Guruswamy – chairman and founder of the Centre for Policy Alternatives

Louise Tillin – deputy director of the India Institute at King’s College London

K.C. Singh – former Indian ambassador to Iran and the United Arab Emirates