A Modi supporter after a rally in Gurgaon on the outskirts of New Delhi, April 3, 2014.
Adnan Abidi / Courtesy Reuters

Between April 7 and May 12, some 814 million Indian voters will have a chance to exercise their fundamental democratic rights by selecting a new government. In a country that has faced scrutiny for its chaotic administration, contentious politics, and vast inequity, the democratic process will unfold in routine and expected ways. Despite India’s massive corruption problems, the ballot will be mostly free and fair. Voter turnout from all classes, and particularly the poor, will be substantial. Following a more recent precedent, no single party will gain an absolute majority in parliament. And, in the aftermath of a relatively smooth transfer of

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