List of political parties in India
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India has a multi-party system with recognition accorded to national and state level parties. The status is reviewed periodically by the Election Commission of India. Other political parties that wish to contest local, state or national elections are required to be registered by the Election Commission of India (ECI). Registered parties are upgraded as recognized national or state level parties based upon objective criteria. A recognized party enjoys privileges like reserved party symbol,[a] free broadcast time on state run television and radio, consultation in setting of election dates and giving inputs in setting electoral rules and regulations. 
This listing is according to the Indian general election, 2014 and Legislative Assembly elections and any party aspiring to State or National party status must fulfil at least one of the concerned criteria. In addition, national and state parties have to fulfill these conditions for all subsequent Lok Sabha or State elections, or else they lose their status. As of 16 September 2014[update], the total number of parties registered was 1761, with six national, 49 state and 1706 unrecognised parties.
All registered parties contesting elections need to choose a symbol from a list of available symbols offered by the EC. All 29 states of the country along with the union territories of Puducherry and the National Capital Territory of Delhi have elected governments unless President's rule is imposed under certain conditions.
A registered party is recognised as a National Party only if it fulfils any one of the following three conditions:
- The party wins 2% of seats in the Lok Sabha (as of now, 11 seats) from at least 3 different States.
- At a General Election to Lok Sabha or Legislative Assembly, the party polls 6% of votes in four States and in addition it wins 4 Lok Sabha seats.
- A party gets recognition as State Party in four or more States.
Recognised national parties as of 16 September 2014:
|1||Bharatiya Janata Party||BJP||
|2||Indian National Congress||INC||
|3||Communist Party of India (Marxist)||CPI-M||
sickle and star
|4||Communist Party of India||CPI||
Ears of corn
|1925||Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy|
|5||Bahujan Samaj Party||BSP||
|6||Nationalist Congress Party||NCP||
A registered party has to fulfill any of the following conditions for recognition as a State Party:
- A party should win minimum three percent of the total number of seats or a minimum of three seats in the Legislative Assembly.
- A party should win at least one seat in the Lok Sabha for every 25 seats or any fraction thereof allotted to that State.
- A political party should secure at least six percent of the total valid votes polled during general election to a Lok Sabha or State Legislative Assembly and should, in addition, win at least one Lok Sabha, and two Legislative Assembly seats in that election,
- Under the liberalized criteria, one more clause has been added to provide that even if a Party fails to win any seat in a State in a general election to the Lok Sabha or Legislative Assembly of the State, the party will still be eligible for recognition as State Party if it secures 8% or more of the total valid votes polled in the State.
- If a party is recognised as a national or state party, its symbol is reserved for its exclusive use in the country or in the state.
- In all States/U.T.s except in the State of Assam, where its candidates will have to choose a symbol from out of the list of free symbols specified by the Commission
- "Names of National, State, registered-unrecognised parties and the list of free symbols" (PDF). Election Commission of India. 12 March 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
- "Registration of political Parties". FAQs. Election Commission of India. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
- "Amendment notification" (PDF). Election Commission of India. 16 September 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
- "List of political parties registered after 16.09.2014 till 26.09.20" (PDF). Election Commission of India. 26 September 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
- "Dynamics of elevation of political parties to State or National Party". Press Information Bureau. 8 March 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
- "Amendment of the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order, 1968. Allotment of common symbol to candidates of registered un-recognized political parties". Press Information Bureau. 17 October 2011. Retrieved 8 May 2015.
- "June 2015 Notification" (PDF). Election Commission of India. Retrieved August 2015.
- Subrata K. Mitra and V.B. Singh. 1999. Democracy and Social Change in India: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the National Electorate. New Delhi: Sage Publications. ISBN 81-7036-809-X (India HB) ISBN 0-7619-9344-4 (U.S. HB).
- Subrata K. Mitra, Mike Enskat, Clemens Spiess (eds.). 2004. Political Parties in South Asia. Greenwood: Praeger.