The 2014 Lok Sabha election, which finally drew to a close on Monday, has earned the distinction of recording the highest voter turnout ever at 66.4%. This surpasses the 64% polling witnessed in the 1984 polls, held in extraordinary circumstances following the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, and makes the 58.2% turnout of 2009 pale in comparison. This general election cost the government Rs 3,426 crore, which is 131% more than the Rs 1,483 crore spent on the 2009 polls. Apart from inflation, which has soared over the last five years, the Election Commission on Monday attributed the surge in poll costs to its rising spend on new measures including the voter awareness initiative titled Systematic Voter Education and Electoral Participation (SVEEP). Interestingly, the first Lok Sabha polls in 1952 had cost just Rs 10.45 crore.
Having added a record 11.4 crore voters in the last five years, the EC on Monday proudly announced that even the voter turnout in absolute terms soared to 55.1 crore from 41.7 crore in the last parliamentary polls. This marks an increase of 32% in total votes cast compared to 2009.
EC on Monday attributed the surge in turnouts to its targeted approach in meeting gaps in voter registration, its strategy to promote informed and fearless voting, SVEEP committees at the state and district level, voter facilitation measures, central awareness observers and the nearly 25,000 campus ambassadors appointed by it to encourage the youth to participate in election
Full Article: Highest-ever voter turnout recorded in 2014 polls.