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94 percent urban Indians will vote in 2014, says survey

94 percent urban Indians will vote in 2014, says surveyNew Delhi, Oct 8 : As many as 94 percent of urban Indian registered electors have said they will vote in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections but a large proportion (42 percent) were undecided whom to vote for, said a survey Tuesday.

The urban Indian voters gave both party and candidate equal weightage in terms of influence on their voting decision, with as many as 35 percent respondents saying their final decision will be based on the party and 36 percent saying on candidate.

Only 11 percent urban Indian voters said the prime ministerial candidate of the political party will play an important role in their final voting decision.

The study 'Urban Indian Voters', compiled to understand the impact of internet in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections was released by Google India here.

Political leaders with strong online presence were perceived as progressive and dynamic, said the study.

The preference for the local candidate was the highest at 45 percent in western India and was the lowest in east at 27 percent, said the study.

The off-line survey covered 108 of the total 543 Lok Sabha constituencies.

These 108 constituencies are spread over 86 cities. The study covered 41,000 people, with a focus on 7,042 respondents who were registered voters in the same constituency and active users of internet. About 68 percent of the respondents were in the age group of
18-35 years.

Contrary to the popular belief, the study found that the young urban Indian voters are heavily engaged online and actively involved in the electoral process with 85 percent of respondents saying that they have voted in previous elections. As many as 64 percent of the respondents for this question were in age group of 18-25 years, said the survey.

Rajan Anandan, vice president and managing director, Google India, said: "The findings reveal that the internet will play an important role in influencing the large undecided urban Indian population in the next Lok Sabha elections."

"There is an opportunity for political parties and candidates to engage the urban Indian youth on the Internet. We are already seeing a massive growth in elections related search queries," he said.

The survey said the voters were not satisfied with the information about political candidates on the Internet at this stage and feel they will be more empowered to take decision about candidates whose information is easily available online.

The respondents also said they would like to actively engage with the politicians online and politicians should allow citizens to comment online and also respond to their comments on social media platforms.(IANS)