A voter displays his inked finger and thumb at a polling station during the sixth phase of voting for national elections in India. (Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg) 

Election 2019: What Does A Spike In Voter Turnout Indicate?

India has seen a sharp rise in voter turnout in the ongoing Lok Sabha election compared to 2014. The average voter turnout after the first five phases of polling stood at 68.3 percent. That compares with the highest ever turnout of 66 percent in 2014.

Neelanjan Sircar, senior visiting fellow at Centre for Policy Research, said there may be two reasons for a higher voter turnout.

First, a stronger Bharatiya Janata Party machinery. “The Modi-Shah combo has organisationally created way for mobilising voters like never before,” Sircar told BloombergQuint. “Interestingly, the increase in turnout is also associated with constituencies where the BJP is already incumbent.”

Second, can be associated with the traditional anti-incumbency against the BJP.

“It’s complicated,” he said.

Watch the full discussion here: