Election Commission of India (ECI), NOTA, Stories

Data: NOTA Vote Share Continues its Decline with less than 1% in 2024 LS Elections as Indore Sets a New Record


As has been highlighted in our previous stories, the preference for NOTA has continuously reduced with less than 1% of the votes cast in its favour during the 2024 Lok Sabha elections compared to 1.06% in 2019. However, Indore set a new record with 14% of the votes polling for NOTA.

The recently concluded 18th Lok Sabha (LS) elections in India revealed fascinating and varied trends across states. Although the incumbent National Democratic Alliance (NDA) was anticipated to come back to power with a comfortable majority, it ultimately secured only 293 seats, a notable decrease of 60 seats from its 2019 tally of 353. Contrary to expectations, the I.N.D.I. alliance, led by the Congress Party, emerged as a strong opposition with 232 seats, marking a significant shift from the past two election terms.

In the Telugu states, contrasting trends were observed. The ruling party of Andhra Pradesh, Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP), suffered a drubbing losing over 140 seats (over 90%) compared to 2019, and winning only 11 seats. In Telangana, the former ruling party, Bharat Rashtra Samiti (BRS), failed to win any of the 17 Lok Sabha seats contested. Similarly, in Odisha, the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), which had ruled for nearly a quarter-century (24 years), was ousted by the BJP, marking the latter’s first victory in the state.

Amidst these unexpected trends, the None of The Above (NOTA) voting option sparked significant debate, particularly in the Indore constituency. This constituency recorded the highest-ever number of votes for NOTA, with 2,18,674 votes. The last-minute withdrawal of the Congress candidate prompted the Congress to campaign for NOTA. This aggressive campaign led to a record-breaking 14% of the total votes (1,561,968) being cast for NOTA.

In this story, we look at key figures and trends in NOTA voting in Lok Sabha elections since 2014, highlighting its growing impact and the shifting political landscape in India.


Data has been sourced from Dataful, which has curated and made datasets from the election results data published by the Election Commission of India

NOTA vote share continued to decrease 

Factly has previously written extensively on NOTA, including explainers and periodic analyses of its vote share and trends across various states and types of constituencies, such as General, Scheduled Castes (SC), and Scheduled Tribes (ST). 

In our previous stories (see here, here and here), we highlighted that the vote share of NOTA, introduced in 2013, has been gradually decreasing over the years. This trend continued in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections as well. 

The total votes cast during the 16th, 17th, and 18th Lok Sabha elections were 55.9 crores, 61.6 crores, and 64.5 crores, respectively, with NOTA votes totalling 60 lahks, 65.7 lahks, and 63.7 lakhs, respectively. This translates to 1.07%, 1.05%, and 0.98% of the total votes cast during that election.

Additionally, in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, apart from the Indore constituency, no other constituency registered a NOTA vote share of 5% or above. This contrasts with the 2014 and 2019 elections, where one constituency in each of these elections registered a NOTA vote share of 5% or more. 

ST constituencies continue to register a higher NOTA vote share 

The decline in NOTA share is evident across all types of constituencies. In General constituencies, the NOTA vote share during the 2014, 2019, and 2024 elections was 0.95%, 0.96%, and 0.93%, respectively. In the SC reserved constituencies, the percentages were 1.10%, 1.12%, and 0.92%, while in ST reserved constituencies, the NOTA share saw a decline from 2.1% in 2014 to 1.8% in 2019 and to 1.5% in 2024. Despite this overall decline, the vote share of NOTA in ST constituencies remains higher than in General and SC constituencies. 

As previously highlighted in Factly’s previous stories, the ST reserved constituencies consistently registered the highest NOTA vote share, even though it has decreased from 2.1% in 2014 to 1.5% in 2024. Additionally, across all elections since the introduction of NOTA, the vote share in SC and ST reserved constituencies has generally been higher than in General constituencies. However, the 2024 elections saw a slight shift, with the NOTA vote share in General constituencies (0.93%) surpassing that in SC constituencies (0.92%), while ST reserved constituencies continued to lead in NOTA vote share.

SC and ST reserved constituencies top the constituencies with higher NOTA Vote Share

As detailed in our previous story, SC and ST reserved constituencies have consistently reported higher NOTA vote share since the introduction of NOTA. In the 2014 elections, all the top 10 constituencies with the highest NOTA share were SC and ST reserved constituencies, with 8 being SC reserved and 2 being ST reserved. This number decreased to 7 in 2019, comprising 4 ST reserved and 3 SC reserved constituencies, and remained the same in the 2024 elections, with 5 SC reserved and 2 ST reserved constituencies in the top 10 in terms of NOTA vote share. 

Notably, the ST reserved constituencies of Bastar in Chhattisgarh, and Koraput and Nabarangpur in Odisha have featured among the top NOTA vote share constituencies in all three elections.

Bihar, Gujarat and Odisha among Top 10 States/Union Territories (UTs) with higher NOTA vote share

During the 2014 elections, the top 10 states/UTs with the highest NOTA vote share were Puducherry, Meghalaya, Chhattisgarh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Gujarat, Odisha, Bihar, Daman and Diu, Mizoram, and Jharkhand. Among these, excluding the smaller states/UTs like Puducherry, Meghalaya, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, and Mizoram, the states of Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Odisha, Bihar, and Jharkhand ranked in the top five positions for higher NOTA vote share.

In the 2019 elections, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Odisha, and Tamil Nadu occupied the top six positions, with the smaller states/UTs of Daman and Diu, Puducherry, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, and Goa not making the list. In the 2024 elections, Bihar, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Assam, and Andhra Pradesh held the top six positions, again excluding Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Tripura, Goa, and Puducherry.

Notably, Gujarat, Bihar, and Odisha consistently ranked among the top six states with the highest NOTA share in all three elections from 2014 to 2024 among the large states. Additionally, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh were among the top 10 states twice: Andhra Pradesh in 2019 and 2024, and Chhattisgarh in 2014 and 2019.

Number of Constituencies with NOTA votes more than Margin of Victory has reduced slightly

Since 2014, a total of 70 constituencies across 20 states have reported total NOTA votes exceeding the margin of victory of the contesting candidates. The number of such constituencies was 23 in 2014, increased to 26 in 2019 and then decreased to 21 in the 2024 elections. 

Among these 70 constituencies, 35 saw NOTA votes that were 1 to 2 times the winning margin, 6 had NOTA votes 2 to 3 times the margin, and in the remaining 21 constituencies, the NOTA votes were 3 times or more than the margin. Remarkably, in 16 constituencies, the NOTA votes were 10 times or more than the winning margin. The Mumbai North West constituency set a record in the 2024 elections, with the margin of victory being 315 times less than the NOTA votes polled.

NOTA continues to be under debate

The record-breaking votes for NOTA in Indore have once again sparked the debate about NOTA, the ways in which it is used, and its impact on the eventual outcome of elections. While NOTA was reportedly used as a weapon against a candidate to avenge his last-minute withdrawal and change of party in Indore, the numbers however show that its preference across elections is continuing to reduce, signifying its loss of shine as highlighted in our previous stories. NOTA votes not having a bearing on the eventual outcome could be the major reason for its continued decline.


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