Male voters hold the key in 2014?

Pankaj Sharma/Zee Research Group

If general elections were to be held now, nearly 12 per cent new voters will be eligible to vote today. Of this 53 per cent are male voters and rest 47 per cent are female voters.

Post 2009 general polls, male voters increased by 12.63 per cent while female voters registered a growth of 10.75 per cent. The Election Commission publishes the list of new voters every year on January 25.

A Zee Research Group (ZRG) study based on electoral roll data of last five years (2008-13) available with Election Commission of India reveals an overall escalation of 11.73 per cent in eligible voters (as of today). The number of voters in 2008 was 70.57 crore. It grew to 71.4 crore in 2009 and 73.08 crore in 2010 respectively. However, in 2011 the figure dropped to 72.99 crore. In 2012 and 2013, the number of total voters peaked up to 75.97 crore and 78.85 crore respectively.

Moreover, more male voters were added to the electoral roll than female voters in the period under review. During the period ranged between 2008 and 2013, the male voters grew from 36.81 crore in 2008 to 41.46 crore in 2013, registering a growth of 12.63 per cent. In the same period, female voters increased from 33.76 crore to 37.38 crore, showing an increase of 10.75 per cent.

Interestingly, while majority of the states added both new male and female voters, a few also reported a decline since 2008.

Chandigarh (37.42 per cent), Madhya Pradesh (28.03 per cent), Tamil Nadu (27.67 per cent), Haryana (24.71 per cent) and Meghalaya (19.54 per cent) emerged as top five top states where maximum male voters grew during the period under review.

In terms of growth in female voters, Chandigarh (37.85 per cent), Madhya Pradesh (28.10 per cent), Tamil Nadu (27.41 per cent), Haryana (24.55 per cent) and Meghalaya (18.55 per cent) emerged as the top gainers.

However, in states like Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Delhi, the difference in growth between the male and female voters was drastic. For instance in Uttarakhand male voters rose by 17.43 per cent and female by 11.30 per cent. Likewise in UP, Punjab and Delhi, the male voters climbed by 13.16 per cent, 12.80 per cent and 14.94 per cent respectively. On the other hand, between 2008 and 2013, the number of women voters in UP, Punjab and Delhi amplified by 10.56 per cent, 8.93 per cent and 13.64 per cent respectively.

There were some states where both male and female voters reported a decline in figures. The male voters in Nagaland, Daman & Diu, Andaman & Nicobar Islands and Arunachal Pradesh reduced by 8.80 per cent, 6.39 per cent, 2.34 per cent and 0.28 per cent respectively when compared to the corresponding numbers in 2008.

In terms of decline in female voters, Nagaland, Andaman & Nicobar, Andhra Pradesh and Manipur reported a drop of 7.37 per cent, 1.46 per cent, 0.86 per cent and 0.75 per cent respectively.

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