Hyper-Plurality of Candidates, Effectiveness of Democratic Representation and Regulation of Candidate Entry in India
AbstractThe presence of large number of candidates in Indian elections had often evoked extremely strong policy recommendations from different expert groups. The major policy tool to control candidate entry in India had, however, been electoral deposit. Using panel data on elections in different states and UTs, our study estimates the impact of electoral deposit on candidate entry. Results suggest that increase in deposit had a substantial short-term negative impact on candidate entry. The candidate structure in India, however, is fairly persistent due to feedbacks in political opportunity. For effective deterrence on continuous basis, regulators, therefore, need to change deposit frequently and keep it at a high level compared to the current international benchmark. We observe that the high deposit may not be an effective barrier against unethical practices like cloning, but could discriminate political participation of genuinely underprivileged groups. In contrast, the current level of signature requirement, a relatively unused policy tool for controlling candidate entry, is found to be low in India and could be easily increased further in order to be effective. We argue that given the high variation and lack of stability in candidate structure across regions and over time, a local approach on signature requirement -- as in the US -- could be an effective deterrent in India. Accordingly, we suggest that the Election Commission of India (ECI) should not only have the power to determine the deposit before each election, it should also have the power to change the minimum signature requirement across constituencies under certain pre-specified conditions.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 46024.
Date of creation: Feb 2013
Date of revision:
Candidate Entry; Electoral Regulation; Electoral Deposits; Signature Requirements; Indian Elections; Independent Candidates;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Stratmann, Thomas, 2005. "Ballot access restrictions and candidate entry in elections," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 59-71, March.
- Bhattacharya, Kaushik & Mitra, Subrata, 2012. "More can be Less: Hyper Plurality of Candidates, the Rationality of Electoral Choice and Need for Electoral Reform in India," MPRA Paper 42549, University Library of Munich, Germany.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.