Accordingly the president of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, arguably the most important politician after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, flew the length and breadth of the country on April 6 to give interviews and attend about half a dozen election rallies. Meanwhile for the BJP and rival Congress Party, getting senior figures out to as many of the nation’s 900 million voters as possible is key to swaying the electorate.
Furthermore India doesn’t have enough choppers and planes to cater to the surging demand, catalyzed by polls every five years. The BJP has booked as many as 20 private jets and 30 helicopters, while the Congress could manage to book just about a fifth of that, the people said, asking not to be identified as the transactions are confidential.
Moreover the size and complexity of India’s election gives politicians with a helicopter or small jet a big advantage. Apparently polls opened in some states on April 11, but while the start of the election gives a chance for candidates in the U.S. or Europe to rest and watch the results come in, in India it means even more frantic campaigning because voting takes place over six weeks in seven phases.
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