Lok Sabha phase one elections kicked off on April 11, a month after they were announced on March 11. While the world's largest democracy became the topic for debate across the country, Twitter played a huge role in making voices of common citizens heard through tweets.
Twitter on Thursday revealed interesting statistics that showed how millions of people participated in the Lok Sabha election discussions on the micro-blogging platform. As polling for 91 seats in 18 states and 2 union territories took place on Thursday, the conversation around the polling witnessed a spike.
In an interesting revelation, Twitter found the biggest topic in election conversations was national security, followed by religion and then jobs. A country that is tortured by communal clashes, people still consume themselves with discussions around religion over bigger concerns like jobs. Agriculture and taxes and trade were the fourth and fifth leading topics in election conversations.
Twitter also revealed other statistics that showed the country's interest and engagement in the elections. According to Twitter, a whopping 45.6 million tweets were related to Lok Sabha elections in a span on just one month, from March 11 to April 11. The hashtag #LokSabhaElections2019 has been trending consistently, but the biggest spike was witnessed on the day when elections were announced and campaigns began.
The second-biggest spike was noticed on April 11, the first day of polling in some states. Out of 45.6 million Lok Sabha elections-related tweets in a month, 1.2 million were tweeted during the phase one of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
Twitter made it easy for citizens all over the country to communicate with their political leaders and parties and vice versa. Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the most mentioned figure in conversations around the LS elections. While Rahul Gandhi ranked number four in the list, Amit Shah and Yogi Adityanath followed PM Modi's lead in second and third positions, respectively. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who recently joined Twitter, was the fifth most popular figure in Lok Sabha election discussions on Twitter.
During the prestigious elections, Twitter gave voice to millions of users around the world. According to the company, users from India and across the world engaged in dynamic discussions around the elections by utilising its features like hashtags, RTs and replies.
"With several phases to go, Twitter is encouraging healthy democratic participation by giving citizens a voice and a platform to be heard in the national conversation online. To that effect, Twitter India also launched their latest video in the #PowerOf18 series to encourage young Indians to participate in civic discourse, understand the significance of their right to vote and contribute to public debate on Twitter," Twitter said.
In this digital age, it seems fitting as people get their information from online platforms like Twitter, which also present with the opportunities to connect with political leaders, an otherwise a hectic task.