Political Parties and Elections
Political parties are an established part of modern mass democracy, and the conduct of elections in India is largely dependent on the behaviour of political parties. Although many candidates for Indian elections are independent, the winning candidates for Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha elections usually stand as members of political parties, and opinion polls suggest that people tend to vote for a party rather than a particular candidate. Parties offer candidates organisational support, and by offering a broader election campaign, looking at the record of government and putting forward alternative proposals for government, help voters make a choice about how the government is run.
Registration with Election Commission
Political parties have to be registered with the Election Commission. The Commission determines whether the party is structured and committed to principles of democracy, secularism and socialism in accordance with the Indian Constitution and would uphold the sovereignty, unity and integrity of India. Parties are expected to hold organisational elections and have a written constitution.
Recognition and Reservation of Symbols
According to certain criteria, set by the Election Commission regarding the length of political activity and success in elections, parties are categorised by the Commission as National or State parties, or simply declared registered-unrecognised parties. How a party is classified determines a party’s right to certain privileges, such as access to electoral rolls and provision of time for political broadcasts on the state-owned television and radio stations – All India Radio and Doordarshan – and also the important question of the allocation of the party symbol. Party symbols enable illiterate voters to identify the candidate of the party they wish to vote for. National parties are given a symbol that is for their use only, throughout the country. State parties have the sole use of a symbol in the state in which they are recognised as such Registered-unrecognised parties can choose a symbol from a selection of ‘free’ symbols.
The Election Commission of India, http://http://eci.nic.in/.
Political Party Registration
PFD : Registration of political parties under section 29 A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 – issue of additional guidelines (English)
PDF : Registration of political parties under section 29 A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 – issue of additional guidelines (Hindi)
PDF : Order- Choice of name for political party (English)
PDF : Order- Choice of name for political party (Hindi)
PDF : Guidelines and Format for Registration of Political Parties (English)
PFD : Guidelines and Format for Registration of Political Parties (Hindi)
PDF : List of Political Parties and Party Symbols September 2009
PDF : List of Political Parties and Party Symbols January 2015
PFD : Images of Free Symbols
Link : Constitutions of Political Parties (Election Commission of India)
PDF : Conduct of Elections (Amendment) Rules, 2011 – Amendment of Rule 90 of Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961 – Increase in maximum limit of election expenses
PDF : List of forms for nomination in elections for use by candidates (except for elections to the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council of the state of Jammu and Kashmir)
PFD : Model Code of Conduct for the Guidance of Political Parties and Candidates (English)
PDF : Model Code of Conduct for the Guidance of Political Parties and Candidates (Hindi)
PDF : Handbook for Candidates (at Elections where Electronic Voting Machines are Used)
PDF : Analysis of Criminal Background, Financial, Education, Gender and other Details of MPs and MLAs of West Bengal
PFD : Sources of Funding of Jharkhand’s Major Political Parties for FY 2004-05 to 2011-12