In pictures: How India, world’s largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections

In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
India, world’s largest democracy, is all set for its national elections starting from Thursday. The Lok Sabha elections will be held in seven phases for 543 constituencies spanning in the Himalayan range in the north, the Indian Ocean in the south, the Thar Desert in the west and the mangroves of the Sundarbans in the east. According to the New Delhi-based Centre for Media Studies, India’s Lok Sabha polls 2019 would be the world’s costliest elections. The elections are likely to cost Rs 500 billion (nearly USD 7 billion), which is more than the USD 6.5 billion spent during the 2016 US presidential election. There are over 90 million voters in India, the world’s second most populated country and they vote for the leaders of their respective constituency. The members chosen by the people then choose their own leader, who will head the government and become the Prime Minister. The Election Commission of India conducts the polling through Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and deploy government teachers as polling agents. The security is handled by the paramilitary forces, mainly the BSF and the CISF. In sensitive areas, Army is also deployed at polling booths to maintain peace and smooth polling. The images below depicts how the world’s largest democracy prepares for world’s costliest elections:
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
Visuals from Assam's Dibrugarh as polling parties leave for their respective polling stations. Five Parliamentary constituencies of the state will undergo polling tomorrow, in the first phase of Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on April 11. (ANI Photo)
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
The Election Commission of India conducts the polling through Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and deploy government teachers as polling agents. Visuals of EVMs from West Bengal's Alipurduar parliamentary constituency. (ANI Photo)
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
Shillong: An EVM awareness team uses the famous double-decker living root bridges to traverse polling stations, at Nongriat in Shillong, Monday, April 8, 2019. (PTI Photo)
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
The security is handled by the paramilitary forces, mainly the BSF and the CRPF. In sensitive areas, Army is also deployed at polling booths to maintain peace and smooth polling. (ANI photo of security personal heading towards their polling station.)
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
Symbol of West Bengal's ruling party TMC on traditional sweets in a sweet shop. This is a common site, and several supporters of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his main challenger Congress cheif Rahul Gandhi also promote their leader in such fascinating ways. (PTI Photo)
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
Security personnel and other polling staffers who are away from their constituency cast their vote through postal ballot. Visuals of a security personnel casting his vote in Tripura's Agartala. (ANI Photo)
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
This time, the main contest is between Prime Minister Narendra Modi's BJP, a right-wing party, which is seeking second consecutive term. Image: Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a rally in Mysore, ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, in Mysore, Tuesday, April 09, 2019. Karnataka BJP state president B S Yeddyurappa is also seen. (PTI Photo)
In pictures: How India, worlds largest democracy, is gearing up for its national elections
Congress chief Rahul Gandhi is the main challenger of PM Modi and the biggest obstacle in his way back to New Delhi. Gandhi is seeking to revive his party after historic drubbing in 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Image description: Silchar: Congress President Rahul Gandhi being garlanded at an election campaign rally ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, at Panchgram in Silchar, Assam, Tuesday, April 9, 2019. (PTI Photo)