ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Small Thoughts on the Elections Further Comment

Further Comment IN his article "Small Thoughts on the Elections" ('Economic and Political Weekly', March 4, 1967), Ashok V Desai rightly points out that the Congress vote has not dramatically gone down and that opposition victories can largely be attributed to their improved electoral techniques. However, it is now generally accepted that the popularity of a party should not be measured only by counting the votes it receives at elections but also by polls and surveys conducted between elections. Voters do not easily change their voting habits but they may still feel critical of the party for which they vote. Therefore, even a relatively small shift in the total votes received at an election may have a significance greater than numbers alone would indicate. In the recent elections tfoe opposition parties were able to "bestir many voters" and also to induce a larger number to cast their votes than in 1962, by their anti-Congress propaganda. Yet the same techniques in a different situation may not have had the same appeal. The Congress was not after all able to woo the marginal voters away from the opposition. Further, a number of young people must have become eligible to vote since the 1962 elections and it seems possible that many of them were among those who swelled the opposition votes

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