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Indian Polity

First National Party from North-East

  • 08 Jun 2019
  • 7 min read

The National People’s Party (NPP) has been recognised as the eighth national party by the Election Commission of India, making it the first regional party of the north-east to be accorded the status.

  • NPP was given the national party status for fulfilling the following conditions:
    • In the general election to the Legislative Assembly of Arunachal, the party polled 14.55% (Polling more than 6% of the total valid votes in the last general election) of the valid votes.
    • The NPP, in addition, won five out of the sixty seats in the Legislative Assembly of Arunachal Pradesh.
    • Based on above mentioned two criteria, the party fulfilled the requirements for recognition as State Party in the State of Arunachal Pradesh.
    • Thereby, after its recognition as State party in Arunachal Pradesh, it has become a recognized State party in four States i.e. Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh.
    • Thus the Party fulfilled the eligibility condition for being recognized as National Party.
    • Further, as per the request of the Party, the symbol “Book” has been allotted as the reserved symbol for the 'National People's Party'.
  • Before NPP’s elevation, India had seven national parties.
    • Trinamool Congress, led by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, became the seventh in September 2016.
  • The National People’s Party (NPP) was formed in 2013 by the current Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma’s father and former Lok Sabha Speaker, late Purno Agitok Sangma.
Sl.No. Name of the Party (Abbreviation) Symbol Reserved
1. Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) Elephant (In all States/U.T.s except in Assam)
2. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Lotus
3. Communist Party of India (CPI) Ears of Corn and Sickle
4. Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPM) Hammer, Sickle and Star
5. Indian National Congress (INC) Hand
6. Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) Clock
7. All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) Flowers and Grass
8. National People’s Party (NPP) Book

Recognition of National and State Parties

  • The Election Commission registers political parties for the purpose of elections and grants them recognition as national or state parties on the basis of their poll performance.
  • The other parties are simply declared as registered unrecognised parties.
  • The recognition granted by the Commission to the parties determines their right to certain privileges like allocation of the party symbols, provision of time for political broadcasts on the state-owned television and radio stations and access to electoral rolls.
  • Further, the recognized parties need only one proposer for filing the nomination. Also, these parties are allowed to have forty “star campaigners” during the time of elections and the registered–unrecognized parties are allowed to have twenty “star campaigners”.
    • The travel expenses of these star campaigners are not included in the election expenditure of the candidates of their parties.
  • Every national party is allotted a symbol exclusively reserved for its use throughout the country.
  • Similarly, every state party is allotted a symbol exclusively reserved for its use in the state or states in which it is so recognised. A registered-unrecognised party, on the other hand, can select a symbol from a list of free symbols.
  • The national parties and state parties are also known as all-India parties and regional parties respectively.

Conditions for Recognition as a National Party

  • A party is recognised as a national party if any of the following conditions is fulfilled:
    • If it secures six per cent of valid votes polled in any four or more states at a general election to the Lok Sabha or to the legislative assembly; and, in addition, it wins four seats in the Lok Sabha from any state or states; or
    • If it wins two per cent of seats in the Lok Sabha at a general election; and these candidates are elected from three states; or
    • If it is recognised as a state party in four states.

Conditions for Recognition as a State Party

  • A party is recognised as a state party in a state if any of the following conditions is fulfilled:
    • If it secures 6% of the valid votes polled in the state at a general election to the legislative assembly of the state concerned; and, in addition, it wins 2 seats in the assembly of the state concerned; or
    • If it secures 6% of the valid votes polled in the state at a general election to the Lok Sabha from the state concerned; and, in addition, it wins 1 seat in the Lok Sabha from the state concerned; or
    • If it wins 3% of seats in the legislative assembly at a general election to the legislative assembly of the state concerned or 3 seats in the assembly, whichever is more; or
    • If it wins 1 seat in the Lok Sabha for every 25 seats or any fraction thereof allotted to the state at a general election to the Lok Sabha from the state concerned; or
    • If it secures 8% of the total valid votes polled in the state at a General Election to the Lok Sabha from the state or to the legislative assembly of the state. This condition was added in 2011.
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