12:00 AM, March 11, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, March 11, 2019


India's national election is the biggest democratic undertaking on Earth. Pulling off a vote of this size is no mean feat. Here are some of the bewildering numbers behind polls of this scale from the Election Commission of India:


900 million: The number of Indians eligible to vote. At the last election in 2014 there were roughly 815 million, but just 550 million exercised their franchise.

85 million: The increase in eligible voters across India in this election compared to 2014, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party stormed to power in a landslide.

15 million: The number of eligible voters aged 18 to 19 in this election. Two-thirds of Indians are under 35.

38,325: Voters identifying as transgender, recognised by India's Supreme Court as a distinct third gender in 2014.

1.1 million: The number of electronic voting machines required for all the ballots to be cast in the mega-election.

1 million: Polling stations to be erected for the election.

8,251: The number of candidates across India who contested the elections in 2014.

3,626: The number of political parties -- though only 1,841 are recognised by the Election Commission.

545: Seats in the lower house of India's parliament, the Lok Sabha. Only 543 are up for grabs in this election -- two are reserved for members of the country's tiny Anglo-Indian community. 272 is the magic numbers to form government. 

186: The number of lawmakers elected to parliament in 2014 with criminal records.

42 million: The amount of dollars seized by election officials from politicians and their supporters for misuse -- including vote buying -- during the last poll. Candidates are only allowed to spend $100,000.

16 million: Litres of alcohol confiscated by authorities during the 2014 campaign. Booze is often used to buy votes from poorer communities.

17,000: Kilograms of illegal drugs seized during the same period in 2014.

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