The costs of frequent elections
Continuing political uncertainty due to recurring elections has a debilitating impact on private investment
There has been a great deal of excitement about elections lately. First, there were the national elections with their thrilling run-up and decisive outcome. This was followed swiftly by some state elections. Some feel these constant elections—every year one or the other Indian state is in election mode—is a useful check on the power of representatives, forcing accountability and scrutiny of their policies, virtually on a real-time basis. The thinking goes that such accountability must have beneficial effects on policymaking, forcing it to be relevant. However, the costs imposed by constant political uncertainty are large, and possibly greater than the benefits.