'One vote, one value' concept increasingly distorted in India

Women showing their ink-marked fingers after voting in last month's general election. Changing demographics has led to a vote in one part of India holding greater value than a vote in another part.
Women showing their ink-marked fingers after voting in last month's general election. Changing demographics has led to a vote in one part of India holding greater value than a vote in another part.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

The principle of "one vote, one value" is a cornerstone of any democracy. But it is one that has been increasingly distorted in India, with votes in certain parts of the country now holding greater value than those from others, eliciting calls to redress this fundamental electoral inequity.

This imbalance, which came under the spotlight in the recently concluded parliamentary elections, has come about because the state-wise allocation of seats in the Lower House of the Parliament, or the Lok Sabha, has been frozen since 1976 and does not take into account demographic changes after the decennial census in 1971.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 08, 2019, with the headline ''One vote, one value' concept increasingly distorted in India'. Print Edition | Subscribe