The 2019 Indian elections, which begin in less than a week, loom large in Diggaj Mogra’s life. It’s all he has time for. “If you were to register as a candidate today, by tomorrow you would have 50 different companies calling you saying, ‘We’ll do SMS for you, give you databases, etc.’,” says Mogra, a director at Jarvis Consulting. A Mumbai-based election strategy and tech company, Jarvis (like the AI in the Iron Man films) was founded by two former executives at cab aggregator Ola—Piyush Jalan and Piyush Gupta—in December 2016.
“Digital”, “technology” and “social” have dominated the Indian electoral lexicon ever since the 2014 race—dubbed India’s first “social media election”—courtesy the campaign of the now-ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP.