Google has set up a dedicated portal to help Indian voters know about their Lok Sabha election candidates, the global search engine said in a statement Tuesday.
“Our new portal – www.google.co.in/elections – will help netizen voters to access information about their candidates and the Lok Sabha constituency from where they are contesting and the outgoing lawmaker,” Google India said.
Designed and developed with rich content from the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), PRS Legislative Research and Liberty Institute India, the portal provides data on contestants such as their education, financial details and social media presence.
“Netizens can click on Google maps and zoom on their locality to access latest information on candidates, constituency profile and the voting day, as the portal will be updated regularly from authentic sources,” the statement said.
The portal has been developed to assist over 800 million voters to stay informed with features like news videos, search trends, G+ Hangout series and an interactive “Pledge to Vote” campaign.
“The portal will help the electorate to make an informed choice during voting. As citizens, it is our duty to choose candidates who are clean, honest and committed to progress, security and development of the country,” ADR founding member Trilochan Sastry said on the occasion.
Google pioneered the election tool seven years ago when its software code writers noticed a surge in search traffic during the 2008 US presidential poll when Democratic candidate Barack Obama contested against John McCain of the Republican Party.
“The Google election portal is a one-stop destination to access information on the 2014 parliamentary elections and contestants in the fray for public office. The tool will enable voters to make an informed decision on the choice of their candidate, his/her party and its symbol,” Google India managing director Rajan Anandan said.
About 20 countries the world over, including Malaysia and Thailand in southeast Asia, have election pages, which encourage people to engage with their contestants.