List of recognised political parties in India
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India has a multi-party system with a predominance of small regional parties. Political parties that wish to contest local, state or national elections are required to be registered by the Election Commission of India (EC).
To gain recognition in a state, the party must have had political activity for at least five continuous years, and send at least 4% of the state's quota to the Lok Sabha (India's Lower house), or 3.33% of members to that state's assembly. These conditions are deemed to have failed if a member of the Lok Sabha or the Legislative Assembly of the State becomes a member of that political party after his election. If a party is recognised in four or more states, it is declared as a "National party" by the EC. Otherwise, it is known as a "State Party."
All parties contesting elections have to choose a symbol from a list of available symbols offered by the Election Commission. All 28 states along with the union territory of Puducherry and the National Capital Territory of Delhi usually have an elected government unless President's rule is imposed under certain conditions.
|Bahujan Samaj Party||BSP||1995||Mayawati|
|Bharatiya Janata Party||BJP||1980||Rajnath Singh|
|Communist Party of India||CPI||1925||A.B. Bardhan|
|Communist Party of India (Marxist)||CPI (M)||1964||Prakash Karat|
|Indian National Congress||INC||1885||Sonia Gandhi|
|Nationalist Congress Party||NCP||1998||Sharad Pawar|
|Rashtriya Janata Dal||RJD||1996||Lalu Prasad Yadav|
If a party is recognised as a state party by the Election Commission, it can reserve a symbol for its exclusive use in the state. The following are a list of recognised state parties as of April 2009.