India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

Democracy took a giant step forward with the Indian first general / Lok Sabha elections held between 25 October 1951 and 21 February 1952. These elections were the biggest experiment in democracy anywhere in the world. The elections were held based on universal adult franchise, with all those twenty-one years of age or older having the right to vote. There were over 173 million voters, most of them poor, illiterate, and rural, and having had no experience of elections. The big question at the time was how would the people respond to this opportunity.

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

Many were skeptical about such an electorate being able to exercise its right to vote in a politically mature and responsible manner. Some said that democratic elections were not suited to a caste-ridden, multi-religious, illiterate and backward society like India's and that only a benevolent dictatorship could be effective politically in such a society. The coming elections were described by some as 'a leap in the dark' and by others as 'fantastic' and as 'an act of faith.'

India's electoral system was developed according to the directives of the Constitution. The Constitution made a provision for an Election Commission. It was to be headed by a Chief Election Commissioner, to conduct elections. It was to be independent of the executive or the parliament or the party in power.

INDIA'S FIRST GENERAL / LOK SABHA ELECTIONS - 1952 RARE PHOTOS (INDIAN RARE PHOTOS)

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

India's First General / Lok Sabha Elections - 1952 Rare Photos

Organization of the elections was a wondrous task. There was a house-to-house survey to register the voters. With over 70 per cent of the voters being illiterate, the candidates were to be identified by symbols, assigned to each major party and independent candidates, painted on the ballot-boxes (this was later changed to symbols on the ballot papers). The voters were to place the ballot papers in the box assigned to a particular candidate, and ballot was secret. Over 224,000 polling booths, one for almost every 1000 voters, were constructed and equipped with over 21/2 million steel ballot-boxes, one box for every candidate. Nearly 620,000,000 ballot papers were printed. About a million officials supervised the conduct of the polls. Of the many candidates, whoever got the plurality, or the largest number of votes would be elected. It was not necessary for the winning candidate to have a majority.

CONSTITUENCIES

The Indian first general / Lok Sabha elections, which were conducted for 489 seats in 401 constituencies, represented 26 Indian states. At that time, there were 314 constituencies with one seat, 86 with two seats and one with three seats. The multi-seat constituencies were abolished in the 1960s. There were also 2 nominated Anglo-Indian members.

In all, candidates of over fourteen national and sixty-three regional or local parties and a large number of independents contested 489 seats for the Lok Sabha and 3,283 seats for the state assemblies. Of these, 98 seats for the former and 669 for the latter were reserved for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes. Nearly 17,500 candidates in all stood for the seats to the Lok Sabha and the state legislatures.

PARTIES

Before Independent India went to the polls, two former cabinet colleagues of Nehru established separate political parties to challenge the INC's supremacy. While Shyama Prasad Mookerjee went on to found the Jana Sangh in October 1951, Dalit leader B. R. Ambedkar revived the Scheduled Castes Federation (which was later named the Republican Party). Other parties which started coming to the forefront included the Kisan Mazdoor Praja Parishad, whose prime mover was Acharya Kripalani; the Socialist Party which had Ram Manohar Lohia and Jay Prakash Narayan's leadership to boast of and the Communist Party of India. However, these smaller parties knew that they really didn't stand a chance to win against the Congress.

'The first general / Lok Sabha elections were marked by a vigorous election campaign by Jawaharlal Nehru. Showing remarkable energy, he covered nearly 40,000 kilometers and addressed thirty-five million people or a tenth of India's population during his election tour.

The Indian National Congress (INC) stormed into power, winning 364 of the 489 seats and 45% of the total votes polled, over four times as many as the second-largest party. Jawaharlal Nehru became the first democratically elected Prime Minister of the country. Voter turnout was 45.7%. The first votes of this election were cast in the tehsil of Chini in Himachal Pradesh on 25 October 1951.

NOTABLE LOSSES

Scheduled Caste leader and the creator of the Indian constitution B. R. Ambedkar was defeated in the Bombay constituency by a little-known Kajrolkar.

GOVERNMENT FORMATION

The Speaker of the first Lok Sabha was Shri G.V. Mavalankar. The first Lok Sabha also witnessed 677 sittings (3,784 hours), the highest recorded count of the number of sittings. The Lok Sabha lasted its full term from 17 April 1952 until 4 April 1957.

0 comments:

Post a Comment

My Instagram