Monday, October 13, 2014

Mumbai And Pune Go To Polls

The General Elections of 2014 were unique in a number of ways. Right from the changing demographics of a young India which was voting for the first time, to changing of poll pitches to attract an aspirational, middle class youth. But one of the most visible changes of this General Elections, was the role that technology played in it.

Political discourse on social media dominated the way candidates were accepted/rejected from parties. Twitter trends competed with opinion polls. The common man now had the power of Facebook to express his political views. Inspired by the role Twitter played in the Arab Spring, young men and women felt they had a magic wand at their disposal. A magic wand made of a mobile phone and social media, to try and enforce their political beliefs on the aspiring netas who came to them asking for their support. This indeed was a brave new world.

And now, roughly 5 months after that phenomenal elections, one of the influential states in the country, Maharashtra goes to polls. And just like last time, we at CityNaksha are trying to do our bit in ensuring more and more people come out to vote. And the way we do it, is by taking away one of the excuses people have to not vote - "I don't know where my polling booth is"!

We are helping people find out where their polling booth is located. That is the problem we want to solve. We help you locate your specific polling booth, so you have one less excuse to stay at home and not get that finger inked.

All you have to do, is open our website on your phone or computer, select poll booths, type in the name of your polling station, and we will show you where it is located, and how to get there.

Or if you are feeling lazy, just directly open this link.

If you don’t know the name of your polling station, just type in the Assembly Constituency Number and Part Number, and we will show you your polling booth.

If you open the website on your phone, or use the Android app, it picks up your location and shows you all the poll booths around you. You can find yours from this list, and get directions to it.

Due to limited resources at our end, and the sheer amount of polling booth data that had to be physically verified and put on a map, this time around, we are making this feature available, only for Mumbai and Pune. But we are hoping, that we will be able to add some value to the whole campaign of encouraging people to go out and vote. And that will be enough encouragement for us to roll this out for other cities as well, for the next round of elections.

If you are a first time voter in either Mumbai or Pune, do give this feature a spin, and let us know your thoughts. Help us make the feature better, and we will take you out for a Biryani! :) No, No, that is not a pre poll promise! :)