With general election in 2014 around the corner, Internet power houses are planning to get most out of it. Election Commission of India has entered into a partnership with Google India, to help it manage online voter registration and facilitation services.
Under this partnership Google will be offering its resources to Election Commission of India for the next six months, starting by second week of January 2014. Some includes the Google search that allow voters to check their enrollment status online and Google Maps service that allow voters to locate and navigate to their polling stations.
In addition under this partnership the voters’ queries on the Election Commission website are likely to be managed by Google during the period. Previously during the 2009 Lok Sabha poll election Commission website witnessed millions of hits per minute and couldn’t stand the massive traffic. So the partnership with Google will really help Election Commission to manage this massive amount of traffic during the election period.
According to Time of India, “Google will put its worldwide network and resources at the Commission’s disposal until June 2014 to help it manage online registration of new voters and allow the enrolled ones to check the address at which they are registered, and get directions to the polling station.“
A senior Election Commission official commented “The Election Commission is going ahead with the use of hi-tech and professional expertise. All that one needs to do now is to type his name/EPIC no and address on the Google Search engine, which will promptly generate results matching the voters’ name with his assembly/Lok Sabha constituency, and pinpointing the location of his polling station. Google Maps will give exact directions to the voter on how to get to the correct polling station on the polling day“
Google will fund the project which is estimated to cost around INR 30 lakhs from its corporate social responsibility (CSR) budget and will not be charging the Election Commission. Google has offered similar services across 100 countries as part of its CSR obligations.
Earlier during the five state election, Google India has launched an Indian elections portal that will provide voters access to every buzz related to elections and politics. Also social media giant Facebook has partnered with Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), to launch ‘Know Your Neta’ initiative to provide voters with up-to-date candidates’ information to help them make a correct decision on who will rule the country.