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International report

The power of money in India's general polls

Audio 07:27
Rahul Gandhi, the head of the Indian National Congress party, speaks at meeting in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, March 12th 2019.
Rahul Gandhi, the head of the Indian National Congress party, speaks at meeting in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, March 12th 2019. REUTERS / Amit Dave

India's general elections is on-going until 19 May.The sub-continent’s political parties display low “intra-party democracy” because policy decisions are routinely made by a small group of party elites.More importantly, party tickets are typically distributed, or even sold, by these elites in the absence of a functioning democratic process within the party.As a result, many candidates from the major political parties view contesting elections as an investment rather than a sunken cost.They also tend to bankroll the parties in the campaign period.In this second report from a two-part series on the power of money power in India’s elections, correspondent Murali Krishnan explains why a fundamental change in electoral laws is desperately needed.

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