- Political parties are an integral part of a democracy. People engage in legislative processes by choosing leaders to legislative bodies representing a political party.
- They also encourage individuals to participate in political activities.
- People’s concerns are raised as a result of such efforts.
- Political parties are thus necessary components of a democratic political system.
- There are various political parties in India.
- India has seen a shift in the post-independence period, from the dominance of a single party, the Congress, in the 1950s-1960s to the multiplication of parties in the latter period.
- A political party is an essential feature of every political system.
Here are some of the major National political parties of the Indian political system.
1. Bharatiya Janata Party
- The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is an Indian political party that promotes pro-Hindu ideology.
- The BJP is a by-product of Bharatiya Jana Sangh.
- The Bharatiya Jana Sangh (established in 1951) was an organization that fought for the reconstruction of India in conformity with Hindu culture.
- Bharatiya Janata Party got its present-day form in the year 1980.
- It won its first substantial election victory in 1989, despite a reaction in 1992 following the Babri Masjid’s demolition in Ayodhya.
- The BJP formed a short-lived administration in 1996.
- Atal Bihari Vajpayee as Prime Minister, the party and its allies secured a majority government two years later.
- In 1998, Vajpayee was re-elected Prime Minister as the leader of a coalition comprising the BJP and other parties.
- Vajpayee resigned from the government when the NDA was defeated in legislative elections in 2004.
- BJP has been in power since 2014 under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
2. Indian National Congress
- The Congress Party is the common name for the Indian National Congress.
- It is one of the world’s oldest political parties.
- It was established in 1885.
- After independence, it played a significant role in Indian politics at the national and state levels.
- Under Nehru’s leadership, the party attempted to establish a contemporary secular democratic republic in India.
- It ruled until 1977, and again from 1980 to 1989, although its popularity declined eventually.
- The party is pro-secularist and aims to welfare marginalized groups and minorities.
- It is a humane supporter of new economic changes.
- In the 2004 elections, it emerged as the single largest party with 145 seats, and it now serves as the centre’s opposition.
3. All India Trinamool Congress
- Mamata Banerjee launched the All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) on January 1, 1998.
- Banerjee, who had been a member of the Congress party for over 26 years, created her party in West Bengal and was given the unique emblem of the party, the ‘Jora ghas phul.
- ‘ During the 2011 Assembly elections in West Bengal, the TMC’s ‘Ma Mati Manush’ slogan, which translates as ‘Mother, Motherland, and People’ given by Mamata Banerjee, became extremely popular.
- In West Bengal’s 2016 Assembly election, people handed the Trinamool Congress a second opportunity with a large mandate.
- The TMC’s success in traditional left-wing strongholds rendered the Left Front almost irrelevant in state politics.
4. The Bahujan Samaj Party
- Kanshi Ram formed the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) in 1984. Its electoral emblem is an elephant.
- It aspires to represent the Bahujan Samaj, which comprises oppressed classes and minorities.
- It propagates BR Ambedkar’s beliefs and teachings and takes inspiration from them.
- The BSP speaks out against the ‘Manuwadi’ social structure, which is practised by higher-caste Hindus, particularly Brahmins, and the top crust of society.
- Its headquarter is in Uttar Pradesh, with a significant presence in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Uttarakhand, Delhi, and Punjab.
- Mayawati succeeded Kanshi Ram and got elected as Uttar Pradesh’s chief minister and formed a cabinet.
5. Communist Party of India
- The Communist Party of India (CPI) is an Indian national political party.
- CPI was formed in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, in late 1925.
- Its headquarter is in New Delhi.
- The CPI’s main aim was to develop a movement that blended militant anti-imperialist patriotism with internationalism, similar to Gandhi Ji’s and the Indian National Congress’s nonviolent civil disobedience (satyagraha) campaigns.
- Manabendra Nath Roy presented a manifesto in Tashkent (now Uzbekistan) in 1920, forming a communist party in India.
- After India’s independence in 1947, the CPI gained support and followers rapidly.
6. Communist Party of India (Marxist)
- The Communist Party of India (Marxist) CPIM, is India’s most well-known national political party.
- It is a political party based on the left ideology with a communist philosophy.
- The communist philosophy was written by Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin that promoted social justice, equality, and a stateless and classless society.
- CPIM claims to be an Indian working-class political party fighting for the rights of workers, peasants, and others.
- The Communist Party of India (CPI) split up in 1964, and its members founded the CPIM.
- As part of communist party coalitions, the CPIM established a significant presence in West Bengal, Tripura, and Kerala.
7. Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)
- The Nationalist Congress Party was formed in the year 1999.
- A split in the congress party became the ground for the formation of NCP.
- The party advocates the core values like democracy, equality, social justice, and federalism.
- The NCP thinks that empowering society’s weakest members is essential.
- It is keen on enacting a law requiring only natural-born Indian citizens to key positions.
- In Maharashtra, it has been a ruling party in coalitions.
- Maharashtra was the state where the NCP achieved the most electoral victories.
- It came in third place in the first election it contested in Maharashtra.