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Registration of Political Parties: Eligibility Criteria for Registration of National and State Political Parties

Registration of Political Parties- Relevance for UPSC Exam

  • GS Paper 2: Indian Constitution- Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.

Registration of Political Parties: Eligibility Criteria for Registration of National and State Political Parties_40.1

 

Registration of Political Parties- Context

  • The Commission has announced the General Elections for the Legislative Assemblies of Goa, Manipur, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.
  • In this context, due to covid led restrictions, there was dislocation and delay in moving applications for registration, which in turn led to delay in registration as a Political Party.

Election Commission of India (ECI)

 

Registration of Political Parties- Key Points

  • About: Registration of Political Parties in India is entrusted to the Election commission of India with an aim to promote political democracy and freedom to form registered political parties in India.
  • Registering Authority: Election commission, exercising powers under Article 324 of the Constitution and Section 29A of the RP Act, 1951 provides guidelines for the registration of Political Parties.
  • Governing Legislation: Registration of Political Parties in India is governed by the provisions of Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.

Election Laws (Amendment) Bill 2021

 

Registration of Political Parties- Guidelines for Registration

  • Time Limit: Any party seeking registration has to submit an application to the Commission within a period of 30 days following the date of its formation.
    • Such application has to be sent by registered post or presented personally to the Secretary to the Election Commission.
  • Newspaper Publication: As per existing guidelines, the applicant association must publish the proposed Name of the party in two national daily newspapers and two local daily newspapers.
  • Objections: The applicant is to provide two days for submitting objections, if any, with regard to the proposed registration of the party before the ECI within 30 days from the publication.
    • Notice so published is also displayed on the website of the Commission.
  • Prerequisites for Application:
    • The application must be accompanied by a demand draft for Rs10,000.
    • It also needs to include a printed copy of the memorandum, rules and regulations or constitution of the Party.
    • There should be a specific provision in the Constitution/rules and regulations/memorandum of the party regarding organizational elections at different levels and the periodicity of such elections and terms of office of the office-bearers of the party.
    • It also needs to have the latest electoral rolls in respect of at least 100 members of the party to show that they are registered, electors.
    • The application would also need an affidavit duly signed by the President or General Secretary of the party and sworn before a First-Class Magistrate/Oath Commissioner)/ Notary Public to the effect that no member of the party is a member of any other political party registered with the ECI.
    • Individual affidavits from at least 100 members of the party would also be needed to ensure that they are not a member of any other political party registered with ECI.

 

Registration of Political Parties- Associated Benefits

  • It is not mandatory to register with the Election Commission but registering as a political party with the EC has its advantage in terms of intending to avail itself of the provisions of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
  • The candidates set up by a political party registered with the EC will get preference in the matter of allotment of free symbols vis-à-vis purely independent candidates.
  • Over course of time, they can get recognition as a ‘state party’ or a ‘national party’ subject to the fulfillment of the conditions prescribed by the ECI.

 

Registration of Political Parties- Eligibility for National Party Recognition

ECI grants status of a Recognized National Political Party, if it satisfies the following conditions-

  • Political party secures a 6% vote share in the last Assembly polls in each of any four states, as well as four seats in the last Lok Sabha polls; or
  • It wins 2% of all Lok Sabha seats in the last such election (i.e., 11 seats in the existing House having 543 members), with MPs elected from at least three states; or
  • It is recognized as a state party in at least four states.

 

Registration of Political Parties- Eligibility for State Party Recognition

ECI grants status of a Recognized State Political Party, if it satisfies the following conditions-

  • Political Party 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
  • It secures 6% 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
  • It wins at least three percent (3%) of the total number of seats in the Legislative Assembly of the State, or at least three seats in the Assembly, whichever is more; or
  • It wins 1 seat in the Lok Sabha in every 25 seats or any fraction thereof allotted to the state at a general election to the Lok Sabha from the state concerned; or
  • It secures 8% of 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.

 

Benefits to Recognized State and National Political parties

  • A State Political Party is entitled for exclusive allotment of its reserved symbol to the candidates set up by it in the state in which it is so recognized.
  • A National Party is entitled to exclusive allotment of its reserved symbol to the candidates set up by it throughout India.
  • They need only one proposer for filing the nomination and are also entitled to two sets of electoral rolls free of cost.
  • They are also entitled to broadcast/telecast facilities over state-owned Akashvani/Doordarshan during the general elections.

 

Election Commission of India (ECI)

Election Commission of India (ECI)

 

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