How Much Does India Care about Voter Participation?

Getting voters to the polls is often a problem in many countries, but there is at least one place in India that always boasts 100 percent turnout. The hamlet is known as Banej, and while many Asiatic lions call this area deep in the remote Gir forest home, only one human does. His name is Guru Baharatdas Darshandas, and as the 68-year-old caretaker of the locale's temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, he lives alone -- but he's not lonely. Besides the busloads of worshippers who visit the temple on a regular basis, Darshandas is greeted every election by workers who are obliged to set up a polling booth for his use. By law, everyone in India must be provided with a voting location no more than 2 km (1.2 miles) from home, so the workers spend several days converting the local forestry building into a place where Darshandas can cast a ballot. And he doesn't disappoint, voting obediently every time he has been given a chance in the more than 20 years he has lived there. Darshandas told the BBC that although he often doesn't even know who the candidates are -- and none has ever come calling -- he believes his vote makes a difference.

Casting ballots around the world:

  • Although the United States and the United Kingdom don't follow suit, most of the world holds its elections on Sundays.

  • Australia ensures election turnout by making it mandatory for everyone over 18 to vote in federal elections.

  • Some countries, including Greece, Colombia, and Ukraine, give voters the option to select a box marked "None of These Candidates."

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More Info: Quartz

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Post 1

In India too, there is an option to cast votes to NOTA. It means none of the above.

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