As India gears for its seventeenth Lok Sabha elections in 2019, the Election Commission of India, guardian of the world's grandest electoral experiment, marks the beginning of its seventieth year. This book celebrates seven decades of India's vibrant democracy and the Election Commission's excellence and rigour, with a remarkable collection of essays written by those who have studied India's unique experiment in electoral democracy, as well as analysts, politicians, social workers, activists, businesspersons and public servants.
The essays in this book cover a range of subjects, from the evolution of the Election Commission, the exciting story of the first electoral roll, election laws, the deepening of democratic institutions over the decades to the participation revolution ushered in by the Election Commission's untiring and targeted efforts at voter education. Contemporary issues, such as the corrupting influence of money and the creeping criminalization in politics, have been addressed, as have been the electoral reforms proposed by experts on these subjects. There is a peek into how India's experience with elections has inspired its neighbours Nepal and Bhutan and impacted observers who have had a chance to witness, first-hand, the mammoth exercise held in the largest democracy on the planet.
The diversity of perspectives from keen observers of India's democracy makes this volume an enthralling read.