In this essay we will discuss about the political parties in India. After reading this essay you will learn about: 1. Introduction to Political Parties in Indian Political System 2. Political Parties in India 3. Indian National Congress 4. Party after Nehru 5. Policies and Programmes of the Congress 6. Janata Party 7. Communist Party of India 8. Bhartiya Janata Party 9. Lok-Dal 10. Janata Dal and Other Details.
List of Essays on the Political Parties in India
- Essay on the Introduction to Political Parties in Indian Political System
- Essay on the Political Parties in India
- Essay on the Indian National Congress
- Essay on the Party after Nehru
- Essay on the Policies and Programmes of Congress
- Essay on the Janata Party
- Essay on the Communist Party of India
- Essay on the Bhartiya Janata Party
- Essay on the Lok-Dal
- Essay on the Janata Dal
- Essay on the Dravida Munnetra Kaghgam Party (D.M.K)
- Essay on the All India Anna D.M.K. (A.I.A.D.M.K)
- Essay on the Mizo National Front
- Essay on the Hindu Mahasabha
- Essay on the Shiromani Akali Dal
- Essay on the Asom Gana Parishad
- Essay on the National Conference
- Essay on the Telugu Desham
- Essay on the Bahujan Samaj Party
- Essay on All India Muslim League
- Essay on the Bhartiya Jana Sangh
- Essay on the Problems of Political Parties
1. Essay on the Introduction to Political Parties in Indian Political System:
All over the world where there is a democratic way of governing the people, political parties play a very big role. These are the heaviest political weight, along with pressure groups and their role, importance and significance can in no way be under-estimated. In a country there can be single as well as multiple political party system.
A single political party being understood to mean a party system in which all members think alike. They follow a leader and have a uniform programme and line of action for achieving that. On the other hand multi-party system is one in which there is more than one political party, each having its programme of action as well as method of achieving the goals which it has set before itself.
For our discussion, a political party means to be a group of persons who have common ideology, follow a common programme and common line of action. In the party there is uniformity of action and approach. It should be well organised and a good political party is supposed to have disciplined membership.
Every political party obviously tries to capture political power and enlightens the people about failings and falterings of the party in power. A good political party is supposed to have national policies and programmes and tries to meet requirements of all sections of society without any reservations.
But most important thing about a political party is that it should adopt only constitutional means and methods for achieving its objectives.
A political party may conveniently be defined as a body of men who have united for promoting, by their collective efforts, upon some principles to which they have all agreed. According to Maclver a political party is an association organised in support of some principles or policies which by constitutional means it endeavours to make the deteiminant of government.
Prof. Leacock is of the view that it is a more or less organised group of citizens who act together as a political unit. It is always a voluntary organisation and is formed by those who hold common views on certain basic political issues.
It should be organised and its members must be prepared to follow certain well established rules and also believe in peaceful and constitutional methods. Its object should be to capture political power.
2. Essay on the Political Parties in India:
Political party system in India has its own background. The origin of the system can be traced back to 1885 when Indian National Congress was founded. It discussed national political and economic issues though at the initial stages its aim was not to capture political power. Its aim was get certain political reforms from foreign masters.
The party, however, got divided into two parts namely the Moderates and the Extremists. Almost at all same time, Sir Sayyed Ahmad Khan tried to bring the Muslims together under an umbrella named Muslim League.
The aim of the party was to protect political rights of the Muslims. As a reaction the Hindus formed Hindu Maha Sabha. Subsequently such political parties as the Justice Party,. The Krishak Praja Party, The Scheduled Caste Party, the Unionist Party, etc., were formed. But smelly speaking none of the parties was strictly speaking a political party because none aimed at capturing power but only to have some representation in the Government.
In India political parties can be placed under various categories. Broadly speaking, these are (a) National, regional, local and adhoc. At the national level some parties are secular and without any ideological commitment e.g., Indian National Congress, including Congress (I), Janata Dal, Janata Party, etc. Then at the national level are ideologically committed rightist and leftist parties.
In the former category can be placed Bhartiya Janata Party and Bhartiya Lok Dal whereas in the latter category fall both the Communist parties. Then there are regional parties both communal and non-communal. Communal Regional parties include Akali Dal, Indian Union Muslim League, etc.
Non-communal regional parties include Peasants and Workers Party, Maharashtra Gomantak Party, Forward Bloc etc. Then there are political parties which have their influence in a particular area e.g., Jharkhand party, Manipur People’s Party, Naga National Convention, Sikkim Sangram Parishad.
Then come adhoc and fringe parties in which are covered parties like Ram Rajya Parishad, All India Bhartiya Jan Sangh, Congress (O) and Hindu Mahasabha.
The days of communal parties in India are almost over because under the new rules each political party is to amend its Constitution in such a way as to, provide that it believes in secularism, socialism and in the unity and integrity of the country. Only after the party accepts these basic conditions that the Election Commission will register it for contesting elections, and not otherwise.
In India a national party means a political party which has the support of 4% of the electorate in any four states. It has organisational set which spreads in many parts of the country. On the other hand a regional party is ooe which has its hold in a particular region. The activities of a local party are confined to a particular area and does not spread beyond that.
Indian National Congress (I), Janata Party, Janata Dal, Bhartiya Janata Party and CP I and CPI (M) fall under the category of national parties. These were so recognised by the Election Commission in 1992.
National Conference has its influence in J&K, Akali Dal in Punjab, All India Muslim League and Kerala Congress in Kerala; DMK & AIADMK in Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry, Naga National Party in Nagaland; Republican par. Maharashtra; Forward Bloc in West Bengal; Telugu Desham in Andhra-pradesh and so on.
In fact, the number of political parties and groups in the country runs into hundreds. Some other regional parties include Assam; Gan Parihad in Assam, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha in Bihar; Maharashtra a wadi Goamantak Party in Goa; Bahujan Samaj Party and Samajwadi Party in U.P.; Sikkim Sangram Parishad in Sikkim; Mizo National Front in Mizoram; Shiv Sena in Maharashtra etc.
Main Features of Political Party System in India:
In India there is multi-party system. As already said the number of political parties and groups runs into hundreds and new parties are also coming up. The increase in members is because some political leaders who get dissatisfied with the existing parties form a new party, though not with an absolutely new programme.
Those communities which have good numerical strength also form political parties. Political parties are formed to exploit regional and communal feelings. Adult franchise is one important cause responsible for multiparty system in India. Some political parties are formed around election lime to have some share in political power. These disappear as soon as elections are over, if they fail to achieve anything.
Then another feature is that in the country even now to an extent there is single party dominant system. In spite of the fact that in the country there are very many political parties, yet Congress (I) still dominates both at the centre as well as in many of the states.
Some states, of course, have Non-Congress (I) governments but hold of the Congress party over the country is very strong. The party has remained in power at the Centre all along except the brief periods during 1977-79 and 1989. But because of internal bickering party has seen many splits and created problems for leadership.
Still another feature is that member of political parties do not observe strict party discipline. There are always cases of taking disciplinary action and expelling rebel members from the party. Indisciplined members of one party are happily accepted by the other.
It was because of this indiscipline that defections became quite common and Anti-Defection Act had to be passed. Even in the party itself leader of the party is disobeyed.
In India the role of regional political parties has considerably increased. In several states regional political parties have already come to power, while in others leadership is trying to fully exploit regional feelings. In fact, after the fall of government in 1979 many political parties had predicted that era of coalition governments at the Centre has ushered and regional political parties will have big role to play at the Centre.
Telugu Desham Party is in power in Andhra Pardesh; AIADM in Tamil Nadu, etc.
Then another feature of political party system in India is that most of the parties are not well organised. The elections of office bearers are not held for years together and they are nominated by the party President. Part) High Command which performs all those functions which elected office bearers should perform.
Though the constitution of India prohibits the exploitation religion, caste, community and region for political parties and during election times but that is very much exploited by all political parties in one form or the other.
Then one finds that though the number of political parties is increasing year after year yet their programmes only marginally differ. On the whole basic ideology i.e., secularism, socialism, non-alignment, federal system. etc., remain unchanged. The choice of the voters, therefore, remains very limited.
Then because of large number of political parties on the one hand and apathy of masses towards political parties, doubts about sincerity of their promises, non-implementation of their election manifestoes, less political consciousness of votes in the rural areas, lack of interests in political affairs by urban elites has resulted in low membership of political parties.
Political parties financially are not very sound except those parties which can manage funds by underhand means or which the business community feels can capture power either at the centre or in any state.
In every political party there is great importance of the leader. A popular and dynamic leader can take the party to height of its glory. If the Congress party has survived and played a very significant role in Indian political life, it is because it could have the privilege of having dynamic and towering personalities like Jawahar Lal Nehru, Smt. Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi as Prime Ministers.
The opposition parties are still in wilderness because these have failed to produce a national leader, who can bring round all political parties, though now there is awareness about opposition unity which was considerably achieved during 1989 elections. But that did not last long and the government could remain in power only for one year.
A disturbing feature of Indian political party system is that gradually some political parties are keeping party interests above national interests. Thus a political party is becoming more important than the nation as a whole. All important posts, both in the government and public sector undertakings, are offered to loyal political workers.
Political bosses, in several cases compel civil servant to toe their line of action and go out of the way to help their favourites.
Thus, on the whole in India political party system is not developing on very healthy lines. Unless some healthy code of conduct for all political parties is prepared and implemented, the chances of improvement of the system are very remote.
It is encouraging that Election Commission is now laying stress on strict implementation of code of conduct and made it clear to all political parties that during 1996 Lok Sabha and six slate Assemblies elections this code will be very strictly observed. In actual practice it also very strictly enforced that as well.
Under the Representation of People’s Act each political party is required to register itself with the Election Commission. It can also be withdrawn at any time due to failure to observe the code of conduct, refusal to observe lawful directions and instructions, etc., of the Commission. Before withdrawal of recognition, however, political party in question is given an opportunity to explain as position.
3. Essay on the Indian National Congress:
In India since independence Indian National Congress has been a single dominant political party. It continued to dominate Indian political scene to 1967, when its hold somewhat weakened. In 1971, the hold of the party became again strong. But in 1977 the party lost not only at the centre but also in many northern Indian states, where Janata party came to power.
In 1980 and 1984 elections Congress (I) again got itself saddled in power and authority. In 1989, the party again lost its hold at the Centre, where National Front government came to power. During 1991 the party was returned as the single largest party in the Lok Sabha and formed minority government but in December 1993 when Ajit singh with his followers joined the party, it became a majority government under P.V. Narsimaha Rao.
This single dominant party system has done some good to the country. It was due to this that political stability came in the country, which otherwise the nation would have lost. But at the same time the Congress-men took it for granted that India was for them to be governed and this created many problems as well.
The history of the Congress party is in itself full of many events. There have been splits after splits in the party. Each split of course weakened the party and some of the political parties even find their origin from the main Congress organisation.
Even Janata party which dislodged; Congress from power at the Centre in 1977 had under its folds many Congressmen. So is true about National Front which formed government at the Centre in’ 1989. The history of this old party which maximum influenced political life of India can broadly be studied under two broad head namely: (a) history of the party from the beginning till today and (b) its policies and programmes.
The party which was founded in 1885 led the nation to the threshold of freedom in 1947. It was responsible for piloting several movements like Civil Disobedience; Non-Co-operation and Quit India. The Britishers transferred power to this party, as at that time it was sole political party which represented Indian masses-Muslim League having gone out of picture after the formation of independence and sovereign state of Pakistan.
The party had then under its folds all political leaders of national importance like Jawahar Lal Nehru, Mualana Abul Kalam Azad, Rafi Ahmed Kidwai, Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel, Pt. Govind Ballah Pant, and so on. It had the guardianship of Mahatma Gandhi.
The Mahatma, however, suggested at the time of independence that the Congress should be disbanded and it should not enter in political arena, but thus advice of the old man was not heard by those who were influential in the party.
History of Congress Party:
History of Congress party can broadly be characterised as that of splits and divisions on the one hand and that of India’s freedom struggle and nation’s progress and advancement on the other. These splits occurred primarily because, though theoretically it was one party, yet practically it was party of parties. In its fold were people of all shades and all sections of Indian society, who had conflicting and contradicting interests and view points.
The organisation had both the socialists as well as capitalists. In the party were conservatives as well as liberals, orthodox as well those who wanted to being about radical changes in the country as well as in the party.
The party had in its fold both the working classes and employers and the people belonging to all castes and communities. In such an organisation splits were likely to come because there was bound to be struggle for supremacy within the party itself on the one hand and between the party and the government on the other.
Differences in the party started just three months after independence when Congress President Acharya J.B. Kriplani resigned on the plea that he was not being consulted on important matters by the then Prime Minister. These deepened when Nehru’s choice of C. Raja Gopalachari as first President of the Republic and that of Kirplani as Congress President were not accepted and instead Dr. Rajendra Prasad and Purshottam Das Tandon were respectively elected as President of India and Congress party President respectively.
Differences so much deepened that in July 1951, both Nehru and Azad resigned from Congress Working Committee as they could not reconcile to the idea of Tandon being the Party President. In October of the same year the latter also resigned from party presidentship.
Infighting in the party continued when in 1950 some dissatisfied Congress members under the leadership of Acharya Kriplani fomied a Democratic Group within the party. The aim of the group was to check increasing corruption. Subsequently this group called itself as Congress Democratic Party. This indiscipline came down to the state level, when some party members in U.P. were expelled from the party and they formed People’s Congress Party.
In West Bengal P.C. Ghosh and his associates formed Krishak Praja Mazdoor Party with the object of forming a classless non-exploiting democracy. Meanwhile there was mounting criticism within the party that the Congressmen had become corrupt and a demand was made that a high power commission should be set up to investigate charges of corruption against Ministers and public servants.
In 1963, several Congressmen in different states levied charges of corruption against their own Chief Ministers.
There were serious allegations of corruption against the then Chief Ministers i.e., Pratap Singh Kairon, Bakshi Gulam Muhammad, Biju Pattnaik and some others. The pressure so much mounted that Das Commission was set up to investigate charges of corruption against Pratap Singh Kairon.
There was not only indiscipline in the party but allegations of corruption, nepotism, bribery, etc., were also eating the party from the very roots. There were serious internal differences in the party at every level. In 1955, the party directed all state units that everything should be done to check indiscipline and maintain purity in party ranks.
In 1958, party decided that no party President or General Secretary shall hold office for more than two years. The party became a source of attack by the opposition parties as well.
There was increasing feeling in the party that degeneration had started in the party because all important party persons had joined or were keen to join the government, both in the states and also at the centre.
Accordingly in 1963, Kamraj plan was given to the party which provided that the Prime Minister should spare some party colleagues holding ministerial offices, both at the centre and in the states, who should take up party work and bring new life in the organisation. In accordance with the scheme several important leaders were drafted for party work.
4. Essay on the Party after Nehru:
In 1964, Jawahar Lal Nehru died and struggle in the party became more tens. It was a time when prices were rising and the people had not forgotten Indiaâ€™s debacle in war against China for which many had held Nehru responsible. But even then Nehru was undisputed leader of India on the one hand and Congress party on the other.
After his death Lal Bahadur Shastri succeeded him, as a Prime Minister, presumably he was considered light political weight. After Shastri’s death on January 11, 1966 struggle for supremacy in the party again started and this time leadership preferred Smt Indira Gandhi, as nation’s Prime Minister over Morarji Desai; again perhaps considering him a light political weight.
But soon she also proved to be heavy political weight and differences between the Prime Minister and Party President developed. In 1967, fourth general election were to be held in the country. At that tune party was completely disorganised. In every state where were dissidents who had left the party and joined opposition parties, thereby strengthening their hands and position.
Charges of corruption were frequently levied against Ministers and highly placed public servants. The performance of the party was found quite unsatisfactory both on social and economic fronts. There was acute struggle for leadership and for grabbing more and more powers.
The result of all this was that party received serious setback in 1967 elections. It had much reduced strength in the Lok Sabha and lost majority in seven states, where opposition parties formed government. In the party itself serious rifts came and within the party younger elements formed Congress Socialist Forum and called themselves as ‘Young Turks’.
In order to win the confidence of the people the Congress party gave ten point programme which among other things promised minimum needs for the community.
But even that did not satisfy the party workers, particularly the younger elements who wanted that the task of economic development on the one hand and that of uprooting corruption on the other should be speeded up.
These elements wanted that maximum responsibility should be thrown on the public sector, whereas in April 1969, party chief at working committee meeting held in that mouth at Faridabad lashed at the inefficiency of that sector and impatience with which some party members wanted to introduce progressive measures.
But Prime Minister openly opposed the views of party chief. The Young Turks in the party sent a paper to the party chief on July 7, 1969, in which they wanted to be considered at the AICC session schedule to be held at Bangalore from 10 to 13 July, 1969. They wanted rapid economic changes and proposed nationalisation of banking and insurance companies and putting ceiling on incomes and holdings of urban properties.
They suggested progressive rate of taxation and checks on unproductive expenses. Another suggestion made was that the assistance given to the monopoly houses by the government should be converted into equity holdings and social efforts should be made to finance new entrepreneurs in the less developed regions.
The party was thus divided into two groups. One the one hand, were those who wanted radical reforms whereas on the others were those who wanted to go slow. The Prime Minister sided with the former and the Congress President with the latter who did not favour bank nationalisation.
Though compromise was reached at the session, yet a few days later Prime Minister divested Morarji Desai of his finance portfolio. Efforts made by party President to get back finance portfolio for him failed. It was the time when Banking Nationalisation Act was passed. It was also the time when election of the office of the President of India were going to be held. Congress party had fielded Neelam Sanjiva Reddy as its Candidate. The Prime Minister almost made it clear that her supporters might not vote for official candidate for Presidentship of India.
When Congress President and his supporters found that the Prime Minister was in no reconciling mood, many of her former supporters started propaganda campaign against her.
There were accusations and counter-accusations. All efforts to bring about a compromise failed. AICC was convened on November 22-23, 1969 to discuss political and economic situation in the country. The Congress Working Committee removed Mrs. Gandhi from primary membership of the party. In this way first split took place in the organisation.
Those who did not belong to Prime Minister’s group in the Parliament began to be called as Congress (Opposition). They were headed by Dr. Ram Subbhag Singh. Prime Minister’s group met, as scheduled in New Delhi and passed a resolution removing Mr. Nijalingappa from the party Presidentship and instead elected C. Subramaniam, as interim President.
She had on her side 441 elected and 54 nominated members of AICC, as against 246 elected and 40 nominated ones with Congress (O).
Towards Second Split:
After 1969 split, Congress party government headed by Mrs. Gandhi was surviving with the co-operation of other parties and as such she was feeling uncomfortable. In 1971, she recommended the dissolution of the Lok Sabha and mid-term polls were fixed for the same year. Congress (O) had an alliance with socialist and rightist parties and propagated that the Prime Minister had dictatorial tendencies.
Prime Minister’s group had some sort of alliance with leftist groups.
As a result of elections, Mrs. Gandhi’s party won two-third majority in the Lok Sabha, whereas Congress (O) was almost completely disowned by the people. Shortly elections were also held in the states and there also party came to power in many states and that too with comfortable majority.
This very much enhanced party’s prestige and honour in the eyes of the public. The party won the confidence of the people by such programmes as ‘bank nationalisation, abolition of privy purses and by winning Bangladesh war’.
But soon conflicts in the party again started. Young Turks in the Congress party were getting impatient and wanted that central and state governments should speedily implement economic programmes. They organised themselves into ‘Forum for Socialist Action’ and started strongly criticising the government for the delays on many economic fronts.
They wanted immediate land reform legislation and complete take over of foodgrain trade. In order to counter their activities, All India Nehru Study Forum was founded by some other party members which asserted that socialist forum was opposed to basic Congress policies and programmes.
While at the centre all this was going on in the states the situation was much worse. There was no Congress ruled state in which there were no ns and frictions. Every state was a house divided in itself and there were several strong persons who were contenders for power. The situation in the states was in no way satisfactory.
It was feared by party leadership that in case situation was not immediately brought under control worse could happen. In April 1973, in a bid to save the situation, Prime Minister issued a stem warning to the members that no indiscipline in the party would be tolerated at any cost.
At a point of time Dinesh Singh, a close associate of Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister, was expelled from the party and so happened with former Gujarat Chief Minister, Chemabhai Patel. Both were expelled from party on account of party indiscipline. It was under these circumstances that in 1975 emergency was declared in the country.
During this period there were no instances of party indiscipline. But soon after the lifting of emergency elections were announced. Not much later Jagjiwan Ram, H.N. Bahuguna, Mrs. Nandim Satpathy and many other senior Congress leaders left the party.
Whereas some joined newly formed Janata party, the others joined Congress for Democracy founded by Jagjiwan Ram, which subsequently merged itself with the Janata Party. In this way Congress was further sub-divided in 1977.
As a result of 1977 elections Congress party led by Mrs. Gandhi heavily lost in the elections. The party lost majority in the Lok Sabha and for the first time a non-Congress government came to power at the centre and many states in North India.
Many members of the party held Mrs. Indira Gandhi and caucus responsible for the failure of the party at the polls and several MPs and MLAs resigned from the party and joined either Janata or other opposition parties.
There were also allegations that Mrs. Gandhi was trying to perpetuate dynastic rule by bringing her son late Sanjay Gandhi on political fore-front. It was also alleged that during emergency crimes were committed against masses which had brought disrepute to the party. But Prime Minister refuted all these charges. Some of the members of the party, however, continued to levy these charges.
They charged her with ruling as dictator and resented the importance which late Sanjay Gandhi was being given in the party. Since there was no compromise on the issue and every clarification given by Smt. Indira Gandhi and her colleagues did not satisfy the dissatisfied members, they decided to leave her and there was another split in the party at that time.
Thereafter there were again differences either in one group of the Congress or the other. Those who continued to stay with Mrs. Gandhi organised themselves into a separate party called Congress (I). The other who left elected Swaran Singh as their President and the party was called Congress (S).
Dev Raj Urs the then Chief Minister of Karnataka had been a strong supporter of Mrs. Gandhi. In 1979, he also could not reconcile himself to the importance which late Sanjay Gandhi was getting both in the party and outside. He and his supporters felt that they were being humiliated and underestimated in the party.
He also talked of dictatorial tendencies of Mrs. Gandhi. He called upon Congressmen who had left the Congress party to come and join it again. Dev Raj Urs left Mrs. Gandhi and subsequently was elected as Congress President. Among his supporters were Y.B. Chavan, Swaran Singh, Karan Singh and so on. His party after his name began to be called Congress (U).
As a result of 1980 elections, Congress (I) was returned to power and many Congressmen who bad left her again joined the organisation and promised to allow her policies and programmes. Her opponents in the party received serious setback. She established her absolute supremacy both in the government and the party.
In 1984, general elections were again held in the country. Congress (I) under the leadership of her son Rajiv Gandhi was returned to the Lok Sabha by three-fourths majority. He established his absolute control over the government and the party. The party, however, lost at the Centre in 1989 elections.
As a result of elections held in 1991 Congress (I) formed government at the Centre with P.V. Narsimha Rao as Prime Minister. But his senior cabinet colleague, Arjun Singh did not see eye to eye with the Prime Minister who was also party President.
The differences were so sharp that he along with another senior party leader Narain Datt Tiwari left the party in 1995 and formed a new party called Indira Congress (Tiwari). But their leaving the party had not much impact either on the party or on the government.
In March 1996 elections for eleventh Lok Sabha were announced, when some prominent leaders left the party. A senior Minister of Rao government Madhav Rao formed a new party called Madhya Pardesh Vikas Congress. P.Chitambaram, another Minister decided to contest election not on the ticket of Congress (I) because of party decision to have electoral alliance with AIADMK in Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry.
He joined hands with DMK and formed new party called T.M.C. In fact several congress leaders left the party. Former senior leaders N.D. Tiwari and Arjun Singh formed a new party called Indra Congress (Tiwari).
The performance of the congress party in 1996 General elections and six state Assembly elections has been very poor. It could get only 135 seats in the Lok Sabha and thus went out of power. It also lost majority in the states of Harayana and Kerala which it was in power before the elections were held. The party even did not remain as the largest opposition party in the state.
5. Essay on the Policies and Programmes of Congress:
Congress is one of the oldest political organisation in the country. From its very inception, it has committed itself to end poverty and improve economic lot of the people. But the task is in no way easy. The problems before the organisations, after independence being (a) whether the party should encourage public or private sector or follow policy of mixed economy in which both the sectors should be allowed to go together, (b) whether there should be planned or unplanned economy; (c) whether there should be stress on small-scale or large-scale industry; (d) whether there should be agricultural or industrial economy and so on. The Congress, when it was united had the following salient or significant features.
The Congress party at its Avadi Session held in 1955 made it amply clear that main aim and objective of the party was to establish socialistic pattern of society. The party decided in favour of planned economy in which both the public and private sectors would be allowed to work together for economic development.
There will be equality of opportunity for all and all distinctions on the basis of caste and creed will be removed. Concentration of wealth in few hands will be removed and all regional and economic disparities will be removed.
Agriculture will be given maximum attention and agriculturists will be paid fully for their produce and labour. Both small- and large-scale industries will be given due encouragement. There will be decentralisation of economic and political power.
Efforts will be made to provide employment to maximum number of people and both poverty and unemployment will be ended at the earliest. Efforts will also be made to get self-sufficiency in basic industries and country’s imports will be reduced to the minimum.
In the field of foreign affairs the party stands for non-alignment and remaining away from power blocs. It believes that no country in the world has a right to interfere in the domestic affairs of any other country. The party also believes that world bodies should be given maximum co-operation and every international problem should be solved by peaceful means and methods.
On Gandhian principles, the party believes in non-violence and encouragement to small-scale and cottage industries on the one hand and co-operative farming on the other.
Though basically the party remains committed to this programme, yet some changes and stresses have come with the passage of time. After coming to power Mrs. Indira Gandhi followed policy of nationalisation and more stress was laid on public sector and land reform measures. Stress was also laid on improving the lot of weaker sections of society and also to uplifting the women and removal of regional disparities.
In 1975, emergency was declared in the country and at that time, the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi gave her twenty-point programme to the nation. These points included bringing down of prices of essential commodities and streamlining of their production and distribution; speedier distribution of surplus land; house sites for the poor and declaration of bonded labour and beggar as illegal; liquidation of rural indebtedness; review of laws on minimum agricultural wages; national programme for the use of underground waters; erection of super thermal stations; development of hand-loom sector; supply of improved quality of cloth; socialisation of urban or urbanisable laud; summary trial for economic offenders; confiscation of smuggler’s property; action against misuse of import licences; workers association in industry; national scheme for road transport; income- tax relief to middle class people; supply of essential commodities at controlled rates; supply of books and stationery at controlled rates and apprenticeship schemes to enlarge employment.
In addition to these twenty-points her son late Sanjay Gandhi also gave five points programme. These included family planning; abolition of dowry system; massive tree plantation programme; adult education and eradication of untouchability.
The programmes were vigorously followed during the period 1975- 1977, as long as there was emergency in the country. Janata party, which came to power in 1977, had its own policies and programmes. In 1980, Congress (I) came to power again and these became the pivots of party’s economic and social policies. Congress (I) still follows policy of non-alignment and non-violence. It also follows policy of mixed economy and that too in a planned way.
The party is now laying stress on transfer of powers to the grassroots by giving effective powers to Village Panchayats and Nagar Mahapalikas. It is also aiming at reforming the judiciary so that justice is easily and cheaply made available to the poor.
It also aims at uplifting the women by giving them share in all elected bodies and reserving seats for them in elected bodies. Sometime back it launched special drive for filling up all vacant posts in offices and public undertakings, reserved for scheduled castes and scheduled tribes.
It is also favouring continuance of space research programme for India. In the international field, in addition to the policy of non-alignment, it is in favour of paying special attention to good neighbourly relations on the one hand and with Africa and Arab world on the other.
In its 1989 election manifesto, in addition to what was already included in the party programmes mentioned above, the party promised to preserve country’s unity and integrity.
It also pledged power to the people. It promised to revamp cooperative system structurally and financially. It also assured pension scheme for all workers in the organised sector, introduction of social security schemes for workers in the unorganised sector, consolidation of schemes for the welfare SC & ST and that new markets for farm outputs will be created.
The party promised to provide more chances for employment and self-employment, to check corruption from the very grass roots and to redesign industrial and foreign trade policies. The party also promised to bring about radical judicial reforms so that cheap and quick justice was available to the people.
Under the Presidentship and Prime Ministership of P.V. Narsimha Rao, the party has been following the policy of economic liberalisation under which multi-nationals from abroad are being attracted for investment in core sectors of Indian economy where country needs are very urgent but nation has no economic resources to meet these.
Non Resident Indians (NRIs) are being attracted to invest their savings in India for country’s economic development.
All other breakaway groups of Congress have almost disappeared leaving field for Congress (I). Newly formed Indira Congress (Tiwari) has however, been recognised a national party for 1996 general elections for the Lok Sabha and six state-Legislative Assemblies by the Election Commission of India.
Organisation of the Party:
Congress party which is the oldest party in the country has well developed organisational setup. Taluka block is the basic unit of the organisation. Above the basic unit is District Congress Committee which consists of some co-opted members, local party leaders and some indirectly elected members.
Next higher level is Pradesh Congress Committee which is also constituted in the similar manner as District Congress Committee.
Above that in the hierarchy is All India Congress Committee. It consists of indirectly elected members. But the most powerful body in the organisation is its working committee which consists of President of the party and its twenty members. Of these ten are nominated and remaining ten are elected ones. All of them are top congress leaders.
The committee enjoys extensive powers. It is this committee which supervises the work of Pradesh Congress Committees and decides all policies. It also abolishes the existing Pardesh Committees and in their stead constitutes the new ones. AICC constitutes Central Election Committee, Parliamentary Board and Disciplinary Committee, etc.
The party for a very long time and still claims itself to be the representative body of religious minorities, scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, backward classes and weaker sections of the society like the women and working classes. But this of the party base is getting eroded.
The party also receives support from the rich and urban elite as well as educated middle class people. Even by illiterate and rural area voters also support it. Party has strong faith in democracy, socialism and secularism. It wishes to modernise the society.
6. Essay on the Janata Party:
Formation and disintegration of Janata party can be considered as one of the most significant features of India’s political life of our own times. It was this party which for the first time, after independence, replaced Congress party at the centre and in many states in the north India.
It was again this party which could not hold itself together and disintegrated after remaining together hardly for a period of about 30 months. Even desire to remain in power could not keep it together.
Congress party had remained in power for almost 30 years both at the centre and the states except, of course, for a brief spell of 4 years (1967-71) when it lost in some of the states, where opposition parties formed government.
Of course, for a very long time political parties in India were thinking that unless and until these united together, it shall be impossible for them to uproot the Congress and seize power from it. But at the same time task of uniting these parties was not easy. Political ideologies very much differed from each other. Even if the parties united, it was difficult to face Congress party which had deep roots all over India.
The people for a very long time had known this party as well as its leaders. The party had branches all over the country and above all had enjoyed power for thirty long years. To some extent this also was a point of great disadvantage as well, because those who could not get power or derive benefit of power were dissatisfied with it.
Steps towards Integration:
First split in the Congress came in 1969. But before that in 1967, Congress had suffered a serious set back at the polls held in that year and opposition parties had tasted power. These now wanted to take advantage of the split. Bhartiya Kranti Dal and Swantantra parties made a bid to merge with each other in 1969, but the proposal did not materialise due to ideological differences.
In 1969, Congress (O) wanted to bring non-communist parties together, as an alternative to ruling Congress, but the proposal again failed. In 1970, six political parties namely Congress (O), Jana Sangh, Swantantra, BKD, PSP and SSP decided to meet weekly to decide about their strategy in Parliament and provide a national alternative to the Congress.
In 1971, elections were held in the country and this time Congress (O), Jana Sangh and SSP decided to form a Front to face the government. Subsequently Swatantra party also decided to join the Front. But it did not achieve much and Congress party was returned to power with thumping majority. The failure of grand alliance very much discouraged these parties.
First major break through can be said to have taken place in 1974 when six small group and parties decided to merge and form Bhartiya Lok Dal. These parties being BKD; SSP, Swatantra; Utkal Congress; Rashtriya Lok Tantric Dal, Punjab Khetibari Zamindari Union and Harijan Sangharsh Samiti.
In 1975, when elections to Gujarat Legislative Assembly were held Congress (O); Jana Sangh; BLD; Socialist party and National Labour Party combined together, as a result of which the group could form government in the state.
In 1975, because of emergency there was no brisk political activity by opposition partiesâ€”their leaders in many cases being behind the bars. In March 1976, however, a meeting of non-communist parties was held in Bombay, which prepared an approach paper for the merger of the parties.
The main objectives of the new proposed party were to end emergency and to preserve democracy. On March 25, 1976, Late Jai Prakash Narayau launched a new party in which were merged Congress (O), Socialist party, BLD and Jana Sangh. The new party known as Janata Party was formally launched on January 23, 1977 with Morarji Desai and Charan Singh, as its Chairman and Deputy Chairman respectively.
The party decided to contest 1977 elections on BLD symbol. It had both the blessings as well as support to Late Jai Prakash Narayan. The new party declared that if returned to power it will restore democracy and democratic institutions, as well as independence of judiciary and that of the press.
On April 30,1977, four parties which had joined Janata Party decided to dissolve themselves. In the meantime Congress for Democracy founded by late Jagjiwan Ram also decided to merge itself with newly founded party. On May 1,1977, the party was formally inaugurated and S. Chandra Sekhar was elected party President.
The formation of Janata Party was widely applauded by the leaders of the parties which merged themselves in this newly formed party. They called it as the finest hour of Indian political life and that the new party was the real party based Gandhiji’s ideals and philosophy.
For them the dreams of Gandhiji had been realised. When the party won 1977 elections, it was hailed as the end of Congress misrule in India and that the democracy had been saved from complete murder. On the other hand, Congress leadership denounced it as a party without any policies and programmes.
It had come into existence only to over throw the Congress and was not likely to last long. It was an arrangement of conveniences in which parties with altogether different view points and ideologies had just come together. According to them, the Janata Party was not a party but a coalition and will be as much a failure as S.V.D. governments which had come into being in 1967.
Before discussing programme of the party, to complete the story, it may be mentioned that after their victory in the Lok Sabha, elected members took an oath on the Samadhi of Mahatma Gandhi. The oath was administered by Jai Prakash Narayan. In this all the members of the party committed themselves to serve the people on the basis of Gandhian ideology and philosophy.
Hardly, however, the government had taken off when differences developed in the party and the government. Prime Minister called the resignation of both Charan Singh, his Home Minister and that of his Health Minister Raj Narain. Whereas after great persuation he agreed to take back Charan Singh and give him Finance portfolio, he did not agree to taking back of Raj Narain.
In the party Charan Singh raised the issue to dual membership, charging that members of erstwhile Jana Sangh unit of Janata Party were members of two political parties, namely, the Janata Party and R.S.S. Differences developed to such an extent that Raj Narain decided to leave the party.
He was followed by many others ultimately reducing the party to minority in the Lok Sabha and resulting in the collapse of the government. The party disintegrated into several parties and constituent units revived themselves in one way or the other and under the old and new names.
Fall of the Government and After:
In 1979, Janata government saw a fall and in the elections which were subsequently held in 1980 both for the Parliament and the state legislatures, the party miserably failed. In 1980 it could capture only 31 seats in the Lok Sabha as against 298 of 1977.
Its performance was still poor in 1984 elections when it could secure hardly 10 seats of the Lok Sabha. It, however, could secure some seats in the some state legislatures and form a government in Kamataka where it continued to rule for some years.
In 1989, the party, however, decided to merge itself with a section of Lok Dal, then headed by Haryana Chief Minister Devi Lai. The two parties combined formed Janata Dal. This created frictions in the legislature party of Karnataka and some of the MLAs decided to keep away from Lok Dal.
Meantime there was some allegations against Chief Minister Hegde, who was succeeded by Boomai as Chief Minister. In view of non support of some MLAs of the party to the government, it lost both majority and government.
Programme of the Party:
As a programme of the party, as long as it remained in existence, it ended state of emergency and restored the people their Fundamental Rights. The party upheld independence of judiciary and freedom of press. It repealed MISA, reviewed all unjust laws and set right some distortions which had come in the constitution by Constitution Forty-Second Amendment Act.
It wanted to ensure that Arts 352 and 356 of the constitution were not misused.
It promised to look into the problem of reducing election costs and find out the possibility of reducing voting age from 21 to 18 years. It favoured treating all individuals, including, highly placed, ones equal in the eyes of law.
Press censorship was to be abolished and mass media was made free from governmental interference. Right to property was deleted as Fundamental Right, whereas people were promised right to work. Public servants were promised to be freed from political pressure and assured right to approach the court of law.
In economic field, as already pointed out, the party stood for deletion of private property from the list of Fundamental Rights and that it promised to try to give right to work to all and laid stress on decentralised economy. It promised to end destitution and unemployment within a period of ten years.
It wanted to introduce appropriate technology for self-reliance and give primacy to agriculture. New plan priorities were fixed in which high priority was given to rural sector. Rural urban disparities were promised to be narrowed down and emphasis was laid on the production of mass consumption goods.
Promise was also made for statutory reservation of sphere of production for small-scale and cottage industries and small holdings were to be exempted from payment of land revenues. In lieu of sales tax there was to be redistributive taxation. The party promised to give priority to purify the environments.
In the social sphere party promised reforms in education and eradication of illiteracy. It also promised safe drinking water for all and taking of measures for increasing group health. Mass public housing programme was to be started. A comprehensive scheme of social insurance was to be introduced and family planning programme was to be encouraged but without any coercion.
Special machinery was also to geared into action to safe-guard rights and interests of scheduled castes and weaker sections of society.
A Civil Rights Commission was proposed to be set up and there was to be an automatic machinery for checking corruption in public and private life. Other programmes of the party included protection of rights of women; introduction of schemes for Youth Welfare, providing of legal aid to the poor, inexpensive justice and promotion of voluntary action.
In the foreign policy programme the party promised to oppose colonialism and recialism and try to develop friendship with all. It stood for genuine non-alignment and strive for peaceful settlement of all international disputes.
It promised to improve relations with international neighbours and also promote regional co-operation for common good. It was also to see that our armed forces were properly equipped and well trained so that country did not fail at the time of sudden crisis.
During its existence the party received support from the Muslims, Christians and also from a section of working classes.
But party being a heterogeneous group could not pull on well and disintegrated within a period of 29 months. It had bad splits and promises and programmes which were given to the people could not be implemented.
7. Essay on the Communist Party of India:
One of the important political parties of India which is increasingly playing a great role in Indian politics, is Communist Party of India. At present it is divided into CPI and CPI (M) i.e., Marxists. Both have different ideologies as compared with main opposition party in the Parliament namely BJP.
The party has got foot hold in West Bengal where even Indira, Janata, and Rajiv sympathy waves did not have much effect and the party could form government in these states. For sometime Kerala was also ruled by the communists. Gradually its hold on other states is also increasing, where it is coming to focus.
It was in 1917 that the Communists overthrew Czarist regime and captured power in Russia. In India task of spreading communist ideology and founding out party was, entrusted among others to M.N. Roy.
Some young men who were convinced of new ideology organised themselves and formally founded the party on December 26, 1925 and named that as C.P.I. Main aim of the party was to uproot British imperialism from India and liberate the country from colonial rule.
It wanted to expose weaknesses of methods of struggle of Indian National Congress and organise peasants so that they could bring agrarian revolution in the country. They were opposed to the philosophy of passive resistance and wanted to bring changes by violent means and methods.
The programme of the party was determined by the Communist International and the party acted under the guidance of the Soviet Union. During India’s freedom struggle, the party criticised many mass movements and organisations.
The communist decided to infiltrate Congress party and many of them joined that party as well. In turn the party decided to throw open its membership to the Communists, who were offered good position in party set up.
But soon it became clear that the Communists were more interested in showing loyalty to Soviet Union rather than looking after the interests of Indian people. In 1939, during Second World War when Germany signed a pact of non-aggression and neutrality with Russia they described Hitler as friend of Peace and Great Britain and France as war mongers.
But when Soviet Union and the USA and Great Britain sided with each other in defeating Hitler, both the USA and Great Britain were championed as defenders of rights of the people. It also appealed to the people of India to co-operate with Britain against Indian National Congress, with the result that in December 1945 Communists were expelled from the Congress party.
The Communists also did not approve of the partition plan of the country and the constitution that was subsequently given to the people of India.
After Independence, the Communists declared that the leaders of the Congress party, who occupied ministerial chairs represented the interests of capitalist classes and interested groups and that the government was being run by big business. They alleged that India was being sold to Anglo-American bloc.
They also started using violent means and methods and instigated workers to go on strike and stop work to get their rights. Their activities in Telegana were alarming. In order to combat their violent activities many state governments imposed ban on their activities and declared the party as illegal and unconstitutional.
Meanwhile Communist party leaders also found that it was difficult for them to dislodge the government, which had popular support, from power and authority, by violent means and methods, because India was accustomed to bringing changes by peaceful means.
In 1952, party declared that winning of freedom was end of one phase of India’s freedom struggle and that the other phase of the struggle in which people were to be provided food, clothing and shelter, laid ahead. They, therefore, declared that they will launch all struggles by peaceful means and methods as far as possible
In the first general elections held in 1952 in India the party won 27 Lok Sabha and 181 state Assemblies seats, which was quite encouraging for it. In 1953, the party was recognised as national party. Since the party agreed to follow peaceful means in its struggle, several party workers in jails were released and some of the states lifted ban from the party and allowed it to continue its activities.
They now started infiltrating into workers, farmers, students and every other organisation.
In 1957, elections the party won 29 Lok Sabha seats. But its most important achievement was that in Kerala it won absolute majority and formed government. It was for the first time in world history that the party came to power with the help of ballot boxes.
Differences in the Party:
But by 1953 differences in the party started over the role of the Communists towards the Congress government. The rightists in the party felt that Nehru government was acting in the interest of the working classes and should be co-operated. For them the government was progressive, whereas the leftists in the party branded the government as pro-imperialist opined and that its policies were encouraging right reaction.
These differences continued but in 1956 view point of the former was accepted at the party Congress held at Pal Ghat, in April of that year. Thereafter CPI started extending co-operation to Nehru government at all levels.
CPI was, however, placed in a very awkward position when its leadership failed to openly brand China as aggressor, during the critical period of Indo-Sino war in 1962. Meanwhile Sino-Soviet differences very much increased and the rightists in the party solidly stood with Russia, whereas the leftists supported view point of China.
The rightists also condemned Chinese aggression over India. In September 1964, differences between the party became so wide that leftists, formed a separate party called the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and both the parties issued separate election manifestoes.
A total of 40 MLAs out of 170 Communist MLAs joined the newly founded party. During fourth general election both the factions fought elections independently and even opposed each other.
After the split CPI continued to support the government whereas CPI (M) did not favour many of its policies. Whereas the former sided with the government in the Parliament and voted with it during no-confidence moves the latter organised bandhs and encouraged hartals. These differences still continue.
The Communists get main support from the labourers and peasants. The low caste in the rural areas and urban unemployed too extend their support to the party. The communists have on the whole their support in West Bengal and Kerala. They have some supporters in other southern states as well.
The communists believe in the principle of democratic centralism and centralised leadership. Within the party the members can, however, freely express their view point and can criticise leadership. But once the policies have been finalised these must be sincerely executed.
Both the parties are cadre based and have well developed hierarchical system. These start work at village level and thereafter district, state and national councils are set up for party work. Working and labouring classes are their main source of strength.
Programme of CPI:
The party stands for freedom of press and does not support imposition of emergency or MISA, etc. It wants immediate implementation of land reform measures. It also did not support some of the amendments introduced in the constitution by the passing of Forty-Second Constitution Amendment Act.
It suggests that public distribution system should be extended and essential commodities should be supplied at reasonable rates. It opposes bank credits for speculative purposes.
It stands for the take over of whole sale trade in food-grains and wants that essential commodities should be supplied at reasonable rates. It opposes bank credits for speculative purposes. It stands for take over of whole sale trade in food-grains and other essential commodities. It believes in rapid industrialisation and quick creation of employment opportunities.
It wants nationalisation of jute, textile, sugar and foreign chug industries. It wants cancellation of all concessions given to big business but stands to encourage small and medium units through adequate credits and providing of raw materials.
It also wants that taxes on the people should be reduced. Industries in backward and rural areas should be set up and adequate facilities should be provided to technologists and scientists so that country becomes technically self-reliant.
It stands for minimum, wages, guaranteed bonus, total ban on lay-offs, lockouts, closures, retrenchments but favours collective bargaining and right of workers to go on strike. It also wants that the peasants should be given adequate prices for their produce and distribution of surplus and waste government lands among the landless.
The party stresses that the artisans and workers should be supplied raw material at cheap rates and co-operatives for weavers and artisans should be set up. Women should be paid equal wages for similar work and for this all laws already enacted should be effectively implemented. Comprehensive family welfare programme should be finalised.
In implementing family planning programme, there should be no use of coercion and at work centres maternity homes should be started. It stands for right to work and labour-intensive schemes in rural and urban areas and also that the students should be given a hand in the running of management of educational institutions.
Right of the Muslims, harijans and minorities should be fully protected. It wants that severe punishments should be given to those who discriminate against harijans.
In foreign policy sphere party stands for non-alignment but at the same time wants that friendship should be encouraged with all the communist countries of the world. It also stands for confiscation of all foreign capital in India.
Policies and Programme of C.P.I. (M):
Communist Party of India (M), which broke from the Communist Party of India, has its own policies and programmes. It also does not favour MISA law or press censorship and pleads for the takeover of foreign capital and investment of private foreign capital in the country.
It suggests moratorium on all foreign debt payments and nationalisation of all monopoly houses. It wants to give assistance to small- and medium-industries as well as propagates nationalisation of sugar, textile, cement, jute and drug industries. It pleads for the takeover all foreign trade and disfavours bureaucratisation of public sector undertakings.
It encourages bargaining through trade unionism and cancellation of all debts payable by the peasants. It wants to drastically bring down prices of essential commodities and reduce all taxes. The party suggests that all should be given right to work and that this should be made a constitutional right.
Provision should also be made for unemployment relief and that illiteracy should be eradicated by providing free compulsory education for all. In the foreign affairs, the party wants that India should have close co-operation with communist countries.
It favours ban on private foreign capital and foreign debt payments. It also wants nationalisation of monopoly houses.
There is clear difference between the approaches of CPI and CPI (M). Whereas CPI believes that revolution in India can be brought by working classes, CPI believes that the purpose can be achieved by co-operating with other democratic forces. CPI (M) believes in dislodging existing government, whereas CPI does not believe in that.
CPI (M) does not believe that the existing powerful classes will voluntarily give up power but CPI has all faith in peaceful means. CPI favours extending support to Government of India in solving dispute with China whereas CPI (M) does not wish to brand China as aggressor. It also wants peaceful settlement of Indo-China border dispute.
Overall Performance of the Communist Parties:
The performance of Communists in India has been quite good. It could form a stable government in West Bengal and has good hold in Kerala and Andhra Pradesh. In the Eighth Lok Sabha CPI (M) had 22 seats and in the Rajya Sabha its strength was 15.
CPI had 6 Lok Sabha seats. In 1989, both the parties combined together won about 50 seats. In fact, since its formation both the parties have given a good account of their performance. These have not thought in term of merger with other opposition parties. As a result of elections to the Lok Sabha held in 1991 CPI (M) won 36 and CPI 14 seats.
It has an understanding with National Front. The Communits see quite, good future for themselves in India.
In the elections held in April-May, 1996 the C.P.M. won 32 and C.P.I 11 seals. The later has also decided to join United Front Government at the Centre with H.D. Dev Gowda as Prime Minister. The former has however, decided support the same government from outside. The left parties hence also been in a position to form government under Jyoti Basil as Chief Minister in West Bengal for the fifth time.
8. Essay on the Bhartiya Janata Party:
Bhartiya Jana Sangh was founded by Dr. Shyama Parsad Mukerjre. The organisation became popular in North India, particularly in Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Delhi, U.P. and Madhya Pradesh. It was one of the important political parties both at the centre as well as in the states and in IX it captured both the Municipal Corporation and Metropolitan Council for long time.
After 1977 elections it merged itself with the Janata Party. But Charan Singh-Raj Narain axis raised the issue of dual membership.
They wanted that the members of erstwhile Jana Sangh party should severe all their connections with the RSS, which according to their thesis was a political party. Both erstwhile Jana Sangh and other consumer s of Janata Party refuted this theory. Erstwhile BLD, a constituent unit or the Janata Party made it an issue and, left the party.
The Janata Party including erstwhile Jana Sangh group unitedly contested elections. After party defeat, leader of the Parliamentary party, Jagjiwan Ram raised the issue of dual membership. All efforts made by other constituents to solve the problem and save the party from further disintegration failed. Erstwhile Bhartiya Jana Sangh had no other alternative but to leave the party.
Along with them several other prominent Janata party leaders, who did not contribute to the idea of dual membership, also left the party. Whereas erstwhile Bhartiya Jana Sangh maintained that it was altogether a new party, its opponents vehemently propagate that present BJP is nothing else but the old name of Bhartiya Jana Sangh.
At a convention of the party Atal Bihari Vajpayee, External Affairs Minister in Moraiji cabinet, was elected as its President.
The party is urban based though it is trying to spread its hold in the rural areas as well. It has considerable hold over educated middle class and large section of government servants. It is a cadre based party with hierarchical set up.
The lowest unit of the party functions in a small area or locality. At the state level there is State Council and State Executive, whereas at the national level there is also National Council and National Executive.
The party as it now stands, believes in secularism and democracy. It wants that democracy should be preserved and for them the Communists should be opposed because they are opposed to democracy and preach violence. According to the party for preserving nation and independence everything should be sacrificed.
The party wants that J and K should be merged with rest of India as quickly as possible. It stands for eradication of corruption and for providing cheap and speedy justice. It also believes in the principle of independence of judiciary. It also believes in the policy of democratic decentralisation.
It wants to have economic democracy in which there should be equal opportunities for all and nationalisation of all basic and defence industries. It stands for nationalisation of mining, tea plantation and such other industries which are at present in the hands of foreigners.
It proposes to abolish sale tax and desires that every Indian citizen should have some minimum living standard. It also wants to give compulsory military training to all young men.
It is opposed to the political appeasements of any community. It is also not in favour of capitalism and favours economic democracy. It is in favour of immediate land reforms and eradication of poverty. It is not opposed to the policy of economic liberalisation provided foreign multi-nationals are engaged for core sectors of national economy.
In the foreign affairs it wants that India should first of all look after its won interests and that she should have cordial relations with the neighbouring countries. It wants that no Indian should be allowed to have extra territorial loyalties and that everyone should have loyalties to the nation above everything else.
Every problem should be solved by peaceful means and methods. The party does not tolerate indiscipline and wants it to be maintained at every level. The party is now laying stress on the use of Suadeshi.
In 1989 Lok Sabha election manifesto the party made it clear that roots of all corruption lie in political corruption. It is in favour of cleansing of public life by breaking unholy nexus between corrupt bureaucrats, corrupt businessman and corrupt politicians.
It wants to strengthen Lok Pal and Lokayukta institutions. It also favours restructuring of tax system. The party favours major electoral reforms and checking of criminalisation of politics.
It is in favour of economically and administratively viable small states. It also stands for statehood for Delhi. Tor settling inter-state disputes it wants to set up inter-state councils. It is in favour of limit on the number of Ministers in the Council of Ministers, deletion and scrapping of Art 370′ of the Constitution. It is in favour of uniform civil code and setting up of Human Rights Commission instead of Minority Commissions.
The party wants to have compulsory voting for all citizens and public funding of elections. It also wants to have optimum defence preparedness and provide adequate protection to handloom sector.
These programmes have also been included in party election manifesto for 1996 Lok Sabha elections.
Party performance is very rapidly improving and it is emerging as an alternative to the Congress (I). It also formed government in Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan but these state Assemblies were dissolved in the wake of Babri masjid demolition, 1992. As a result of elections held thereafter the party could form government in Rajasthan, Gujrat and Delhi.
It is a very important coalition partner of Shiv Sena in Maharashtra, where both together have formed government. In Madhya Pradesh, it is major opposition party. It has formed government in Gujrat.
After the election held for eleventh Lok Sabha in Apirl-May, 1996 the party won 161 seats and was returned as the single largest party and its leader Atal Bihari Vajpeyee was invited by the President to form the government. It enjoyed the support of 16 members of Shiv Sena, 3 of Haryana Vikas Party and 5 of Samta pony.
He fanned the government at the Centre and thus for the first time BJ.P. government was saddled in authority at the Centre. But it remained m power for only 13 day when all other political parties decided not to support B.J.P. government, branding it as a communal party. It is the mam opposition parties in both the Houses of Parliament now.
The party performance in 1989 Lok Sabha elections was remarkable; whereas in the eighth Lok Sabha it had only two seats, in the ninth Lok Saba it won as many as 88 seats. In the tenth Lok Sabha it emerged as the main opposition party. It is also the main opposition party in the Rajya Sabha.
9. Essay on the Lok-Dal:
It was during fourth general elections that some Congress men under the leadership of Charan Singh broke away from the Congress party and founded a new political party called Bhartiya Kranti Dal. It was a coalition party in the S.V.D. government formed in the at that time up leader Charan Singh became U.P. Chief Minister.
In 1974, some non-Communist parties decided to come together. These were SSP, Utkal Congress; Rashtriya Lok Tantrik Dal; Kisan Mazdoor Party of Haryana and the Swatantra and Khetibari Kisan Union of Punjab. The party was named as Bhartiya Lok Dal.
The party decided to merge itself with the Janata Party which was founded in 1977, and its leader Charan Singh became the Home Minister in the new government. But it broke out from the Janata Party on dual membership issue. The members of erstwhile BLD and their associates named their party as Janata (S) or Janata (Secular) which was subsequently named as Janata (Socialist).
It was their leader Charan Singh, who became the Prime Minister of care taker government, after the fall of Morarji Desai’s government in 1979.
It is opposed to taxation on agricultural produces. It wants that peasants should be given all facilities including credits, fertilisers and improved seeds, in addition to irrigation facilities. It also wants abolition of land lordism. It is not in favour of take over of whole sale wheat trade by the government.
It is opposed to the levy of income tax on salaries and insists on the widest dispersal of ownership of property and means of production. It is also against concentration of wealth in the hands of few capitalists and also that of too much of power in the hands of the central government. It wishes that the states should have more autonomy.
The party has support of farmers and the rural folk of a part of U.P., Bihar and its adjoining states. Both the Jats and Rajputs of U.P. and adjoining states also extend their support to it. It gives great importance to agricultural and rural development.
It has full faith in Gandhian socialism and trusteeship system as propagated by Mahatma Gandhi. It wants that the agriculturists should be given remunerative prices for their produce.
The village should be self-sufficient unit and economy should be decentralised. It is opposed to communalism. It wants to end the hold of multinational corporations and foreign agencies. It wants to improve the conditions of the poor and the downtrodden and favours abolition of landlordism.
It also favours curtailment of powers of the central government. It is also in favour of replacing income tax by consumption tax. It is opposed to drinking and aims at introducing prohibition.
After breaking away from Janata party Lok Dal tried to co-operate with Congress (I) and thereafter with Congress (U) but could not achieve much success. It received further set back when late Raj Narain left the party. During 1984 elections its performance in the Lok Sabha was disappointing but it could capture about 150 Assembly seats in Bihar, Rajasthan and U.P.
The party received further set back after the death of its founder President and leader Chaudhri Charan Singh. It got divided with two groups one headed by his son Ajit Singh and the other by late H.N. Bahuguna. The latter joined hands with Chaudhri Devi Lai of Haryana and won Haryana Assembly elections held in 1987.
It also formed government in the state, though subsequently both parted company. Ajit Singh group, however, joined the newly formed Janata Dal. He subsequently joined Congress (I) and became a Minister in Narsimha Rao government.
10. Essay on the Janata Dal:
Opposition parties in India have always been trying to come together. A fresh initiative was taken in 1988 by Haryana Chief Minister Chaudhri Devi Lai. His call was responded by Janata Party leadership and accordingly Lok Dal and Janata Party decided to merge their identity and form a new party called Janata Dal.
Ajit Singh group also joined the Dal. It got the full support of Telugu Desam party headed by N.T. Rama Rao.
The party came to an understanding with other opposition parties, including BJP and leftist parties. These parties developed a strategy by which only one candidate was to be fielded in each constituency to contest election against a Congress candidate, so that there was no division of votes. The strategy worked well and as a result of 1989 general elections to the Lok Sabha the Congress lost majority.
It could win only 193 seats, as against 143 of the National Front out of which Janata Dal won 141 seats. BJP which won 88 seats and Leftist parties which could capture about 50 seats assured their support from outside to National Front formed the government.
This practically meant Janata Dal government. Thus, a minority government headed by Janata Dal leader V. P. Singh was formed with outside support of BJP and left parties. In 1989, it formed government at the Centre, dislodging Congress (I) from power for the second time.
The election manifesto of the party promised a clean and efficient government on the one hand restoring of dignity to all on the other. The manifesto also promised to make right to work as a statutory right and to enshrine right to information in the Constitution.
It also promised to convert AIR and Doordarshan into autonomous corporations. Another programme of the party included curbing of corruption and tracking down the kickbacks received in Bofors and other deals.
The party promised to introduce comprehensive electoral reforms and curb money and muscle power in the elections. It also aimed at revitalising parliamentary and other constitutional institutions and to make these accountable to the nation. It promised to lay stress on agricultural and rural development and promised to keep 50% of the plan out lay for the purpose.
It also promised rumencrative prices for agricultural produce, debt relief to farmers and make credit facilities available to them. It also planned to supply essential commodities to rural poor at reasonable prices. It also promised exploitation of water resources, maximum wages to agricultural labour, etc.
In foreign policy, it proposes to follow the policy of non-alignment and have good neighbourly relations. It believed in open system of government at home. It was opposed to over centralisation and wanted to restore true federal character to polity.
It wanted to give fair deal both to women, Scheduled Castes & Schedule Tribes and other backward classes. The party per posed to solve all national problems with the cooperation of other political parties. It also promised to ensure that the judiciary was kept outside -je influence of the executive and justice was both quick and cheap.
It promised implementation of Mandal Commission recommendations, which resulted in wide spread riots all over India and resulted in down fall of the government.
Janata Dai’s performance is quite impressive. It has formed governments in Karnataka and Bihar. It is part of National Front and an active participants in National Front â€” Left Front Combine. It has entered into an alliance with Samaj-Wadi party in U.P. for contesting 1996 Lok Sabha and State Assembly elections.
As a result of elections held in April-May 1996 for the eleventh Lok Sabha the party 44 seats. It took active part in the formation of United Front consisting of 13 national and regional parties. It became a major partner in United Front Government headed by one of its leaders H.D. Dev Gowda as Prime Minister, which took office on 1.6.1996.
11. Essay on the Dravida Munnetra Kaghgam Party (D.M.K):
DMK party had very strong hold in Tamil Nadu, but its position has been taken over by All India Anna DMK party, which is break away of the main DMK. It is outgrowth of Justice Party of E.V. Ramaswamy Naicker. The party was founded by C.N. Annadurai.
South India has been feeling concerned about its poverty for quite some time. Some leaders of the non-Brahmin Dravidan Community founded separate party known as Justice party to launch a struggle against poverty. The leaders included C. Natasa Mudaliar, T.M. Nair and several others. But Justice party could not pull on well and many frictions and factions developed in it.
It was out of these internal disputes that a leader of the people E.V. Ramaswamy Naicker emerged and in 1944 he founded DMK. It was in the beginning a party which was against the Brahmins, even the Veda: and all rituals and practices which the Brahmins had imposed on Hindu society. After independence Naicker adopted a negative attitude towards both about honouring national flag and Indian Constitution.
He also married a young 28 years party worker at the age of 72 and also did not agree to run Party on democratic lines.
This irritated many party workers who organised themselves under the leadership of C.N. Annadurai, who had earlier been chosen by Naicker himself as his trusted colleague. On September 17, 1949, Annadurai broke away from the party and founded DMK.
The new party decided to champion the cause of the poor, illiterate and down-trodden in Tamil Nadu. Soon the party started entering political arena. In 1957, it won 15 seats in the state Assembly but the number rose to 50 in 1962. In that year it also won 7 Lok Sabha seats. But it was in 1967 that party captured power in the state and also captured all the 25 seats which it contested for the Lok Sabha.
The party had full hold over the people and in the elections held in 1971, it did not receive any serious set back though all other opposition parties were effected by “Indira Wave” which swept the country in that year. Even in that year it captured 23 Lok Sabha seats. There was however division in the party when M.G. Ramachaudran, party treasurer and a Minister in the cabinet broke out from it and formed All India Anna DMK.
It is this party which remained in power in the state for about a decade. In 1977, when Janata party came to power, it co-operated with it and its nominees held Ministerial posts in the Union Cabinet. In the election held in 1980, DMK reached an understanding with Congress (I) and captured 16 Lok Sabha seals. In the elections held in 1984 the party could capture only one Lok Sabha seat and its performance was not good even in the state elections held at that time.
The party captured power in the state after elections held early in 1989 for the State Assembly in Tamil Nadu. It, however, could not win even a single seat for the Lok Sabha in the elections held in November of that year. The party had then sided with National Front. In 1995 the party had no representation in the Lok Sabha and also in Tamil Nadu Assembly where it had almost, giving been completely wiped out.
The party position however, very much improved during 1996 elections, which were held in April-May of that year both for the Lok Sabha as well as the State Assembly. For the Lok Sabha it won 17 seats, whereas in the Assembly elections, it won absolute majority.
It completely routed its opponent AIADMK headed by Jaya Lilatha. It formed government under Karunanidhi. At the Centre it joined United Front and joined Front government headed by H.D. Dev Gowda.
The party stands for more powers for the states, as in its opinion states in India are more or less glorified municipalities. It is opposed to the imposition of Hindi on the people of the South. It wants federalisation of financial resources and code of conduct to give guide-lines under which states Assemblies should be dissolved.
It favours free press and ending of regional imbalances. It wants industrialisation in the South which could end poverty. The party is opposed to confrontation with the centre, but does not favour deployment of police or army by the centre in the states, without states’ approval.
It also wants that Darvadian culture should be popularised. It favours regional language as state language. It stands for the uplifting of the poor and the down trodden, both socially and economically. It favours giving wide powers to the states both in financial and administrative fields.
12. Essay on All India Anna D.M.K. (A.I.A.D.M.K):
The party was founded in October 1972 by M.G. Ramachandran, who was Treasurer of DMK party and also a Minister in DMK Government. In the elections held in 1977 the party won absolute majority in Tamil Nadu and formed government. It also captured 18 Lok Sabha seats.
It also formed Ministries in Pondicherry both in 1974 and 1977. In 1980 elections, the party, however, could win only two Lok Sabha seats but its performance in Assembly elections held in that year was really impressive. It could form government in Tamil Nadu. In the Lok Sabha elections held in 1984 it could capture 12 out of 18 Lok Sabha seats, and its performance in the Assembly was loo impressive.
After 1984 election, party Chief and State Chief Minister M.G. Ramachandran began to keep poor health. He almost lost his vigour to guide, though he continued to guide party affairs and also remained state Chief Minister. After his death the party got divided between Janaki Ramachandran (his wife) group and Jayalalitha group.
In the elections which were held for the slate Assembly in 1989 DMK took full advantage of the rift and could win absolute majority in the State Assembly.
It formed government under the leadership of M. Karunanidhi. Thus, ended glorious era of Ramachandran and AIADMK. Both Janaki and Jayalalitha groups, however, again united. In Lok Sabha elections held in 1989, the party joined hands with Congress (I) and both won all the seats from Tamil Nadu, whereas DMK drew blank.
In 1995, the party had 12 seats in the Lok Sabha and 6 seats in the Rajya Sabha. It formed government in Tamil Nadu under the Chief Ministership of Ms. Jayalalitha. The party has strong hold in the state.
For 1996 Lok Sabha and State Legislative Assembly elections it has entered into alliance with the Congress (1). Both the parties contested as combine both in Tamil Nadu and Pondichem but were badly defeated. The alliance had very poor performance in both the states.
The party wants that more powers and resources should be transferred to the states. It also does not wish that Hindi should be given the status of national language. It favours regional language as state language with English as link language. It stands for prohibition and nationalisation of large-scale industries and also state control over essential commodities.
It also wants that the electorates should be given power to recall their elected representatives. It favour prohibition throughout India and State controlled production and distribution of all essential commodities.
In the foreign affairs it feels that the government is leaning towards Soviet Union and wants that India should have close healthy relations with neighbouring and South East Asian countries. It lays great stress on national security and recovery of all those Indian territories which have been occupied by foreign powers.
13. Essay on the Mizo National Front:
The party was set up as early as in 1960 but its performance during stale Assembly elections was not good. In 1965, the party demanded creation of sovereign state of Mizoram which should be empowered to frame its own foreign policy.
In order to achieve its objectives the party indulged in violence and insurgency.
Underground activities of militant Mizos very considerably increased and military had to be called to crush it. Militant attitude of the party persisted for about 2 decades when in 1986 an Accord was signed with Mizo National From leader Laldenga and a coalition government with the partnership of Congress (I) under his Chief Ministership was formed.
In 1987 the party got majority in the State Assembly and formed a government of its own. It continued to rule the state till September 1988 when the government was dismissed and the state was placed under President rule.
Meanwhile there was split in the party and new party called MNF (Democrat) was formed. In 1989, when elections for the state Assembly were again held the party did not fair well and could capture only 14 seats as against 23 of the Congress (I). In November 1993, the party could manage to win only 14 seats. In 1995, the party had no representation in Parliament.
After the creation of separate state of Mizoram insurgency and militancy in the state has been considerably brought under control.
The party wants that Mizo culture language and religion should be fully protected and separate state for the purpose should be created. The state should have sufficient resources needed for self-reliant economy of the state so that it becomes less dependent on the Centre.
14. Essay on the Hindu Mahasabha:
Hindu Mahasabha is an old political party. It was in existence even before the partition of the country. Main aim of the party then was to counter the effect of Muslim League and to consolidate the Hindus and make them politically conscious about their rights and place in India. The party wants that Hindu culture and civilisation should be protected and developed.
It believes in the following of democratic principles but wants that India should be developed on the basis of cultural traditions of the country. It is of the view that it should not be forgotten that India is predominantly a Hindu state.
It wants that all sections of Indian society should be consolidated and uplifted and all social in-equalities and disabilities should be removed. It is strongly of the view that cow slaughter should be banned.
It stands for the nationalisation of all key industries and also wants that India should be quickly industrialised and modernised. It is opposed to concentration of wealth just in few hands. It wants that able bodied persons should be given compulsory military training. It is not in favour of India’s continuance in the Commonwealth. It favours compulsory military training for all able bodies person so that India emerges as a powerful state.
In spite of the fact that it is an old political party, yet it has not made any dent on the political scene of India. By the ruling elite it has been branded as a communal political party which has no place in secular fabric and polity of the country.
15. Essay on the Shiromani Akali Dal:
In Punjab politics Akali Dal has played and continues to play a very dominant role. This party was in existence even before the partition of the country’. Under the undisputed leadership, Master Tara Singh, the party negotiated with the Missions which visited India from time to time to find a solution to India’s constitutional problems.
It was due to the efforts of this Dal that interests of Sikhs in Punjab were protected or at least their demands came to focus. Before bifurcation of Punjab into two separate states i.e. Punjab and Haryana the Dal had been demanding creation of separate Punjabi speaking state.
In 1967, Akali Dal and Bhartiya Jana Sangh formed coalition government in Punjab. In 1971, under Indira wave Akali Dal lost majority in the state Assembly but emerged as single largest group in the state. In 1977, it was returned to power in the state and formed coalition government with Janata party.
The party had cabinet post in Janata government which was in power between 1977-79. When Moraiji Desai government resigned, it decided to extend its cooperation to the care-taker government headed by Charan Singh. In 1980 elections, the Dal did not return to power, but was the single largest party in Punjab Legislative Assembly.
A section of the Akali Dal under Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindrawala took recourse to serious violence demanding full implementation of Anand Pur Sahib resolution. The violence not only created law and order problem but took many precious lives in a very planned manner.
This group ushered an era of terrorism in Punjab and the minorities started leaving the state. Under the circumstances the state was placed under President rule, but the government showed its keenness to introduce democratic set up and accordingly an Accord was signed between the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and Surject Singh Bamala and Sant Longowal.
After the Accord elections were held in the State and Akali Dal headed by Surjeet Singh Bamala was returned to power. Sant Longowal was, however, shot down by the terrorist. Akali Government of Barnala, however, could not remain united and got divided. It was also alleged that some of its Ministers were in league with the terrorists.
The minority government with the help of some other parties continued in power but could not check deteriorating, law and order situation. President rule had to be again imposed and state remained under President rule for few years, till elections were held and Congress (I) returned to power.
It formed government under Beant who successfully brought peace to the state but in the process annoyed the militant, who shot him dead in 1995. He was succeeded by H.S. Brar as state Chief Minister. In 1995, the party had no representation in the Lok Sabha.
In 1996 Lok Sabha elections held in April-May of that year the party won 8 out of 13 seats and thus got good representation in the Lok Sabha from Punjab. During confidence vote moved in the Lok Sabha in May, 1996 by Atal Bihari Vajpayee for his government, the Dal sided with B.J.P.
It believes in the abolition of landlordism and taking over land without payment of compensation. It favours state control over means of production and distribution. It supports the idea of reducing the prices of agricultural equipments and free movement of food stuff from one state to the other.
It favours inn-coercive family planning programme. It wants that all Panjabi speaking areas and also Chandigarh should be transferred to Punjab and favours safeguarding of social, economic and political interests of minorities. It favours the philosophy of socialism and that of welfare state.
It believes that agricultural production should be increased and it should also be exempted from the payment of sales tax. It also stands for free movement of food grains throughout the country. It wants immediate withdrawal of all repressive laws.
16. Essay on the Asom Gana Parishad:
Assam is a sensitive state in India and has seen several turmoil’s and agitations. AGP. (Asom Gana Parishad) was founded in 1985. When elections for the state Assembly were held in December of that year it was returned as a majority party and its leader Prafulla Kumar Mohanta formed government in the state.
But soon the party alienated the sympathies of Bengalis and Marwaris because of its unqualified support to the Hindu Community of Brahmaputra. It also adopted an attitude of confrontation with the Central government.
The result was that law and order situation in the state deteriorated and in November, 1990 the state was placed under President’s rule. Elections to the state Assembly were again held in June 1991, when its performance was very disappointing.
The party pleads that the people of Assam should dominate over state economy and Bangladeshis who have come to Assam and settled down here should be thrown out of the state. Like J & K the stale of Assam should also be given special status in India.
In 1995, the party had one seat each in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha but had 25 seats in Assam Legislative Assembly.
After 1996 Stale Assembly elections the party was in a position to form a coalition government in the State, with its leader Proffula Kumar Mohanta as Chief Minister. It also won five Lok Sabha seats and has decided to support and join United Front government at the Centre. It is also a part of Federal Front formed by four regional parties within the United Front.
17. Essay on the National Conference:
It has its influence in J &K State and till 1965, in collaboration with and with the co-operation of Congress party, it ruled over the state. It was in that year that the party saw a split and went in the background. In 1975, the party was revived under late Shiekh Muhammad Abdulla and showed good performance both in the Lok Sabha and State Assembly elections.
After his death the party again got divided and Dr. Farooq Abdulla, Shiekh’s son, beaded one faction.
It won 1983 Assembly elections but could not survive full term as G.M. Shah withdrew his support from the government. Shah Ministry which came to power with the support of Congress, could not control deteriorating law and order situation and check corruption in the state.
The party lost support of the Congress and saw its down fall. The state was placed under President rule, subsequently an agreement was signed between Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and Farooq Abdulla and a Coalition government headed by the latter was installed in J&K.
He, however, recommended dissolution of Assembly and proposed fresh elections, which were held in 1987. National Conference and Congress (I) co-operated with each other and won absolute majority in the state Assembly. It formed government as well in the state. But 1990 when Jag Mohan was appointed state Governor, state Chief Minister resigned and since then the state is under President rule.
The party is opposed to communalism and favours socialism. It accepts that Kashmir is an integral part of India but wishes that its special status should be continued. It also wants more autonomy and Financial resources for the state.
It also believes that states in India should be given more powers. The party has decided not to participate in 1996 Lok Sabha elections or to nominate any candidate for the seats to be filled from J&K.
18. Essay on the Telugu Desham:
The party was founded in March 1982 under the leadership of N.T. Rama Rao, a film star. In the Assembly elections which were held in 1983 the party captured power in Andhra Pradesh, where it had its strong hold. In 1984 the then Governor Ramlal dismissed Ministry but that had to be reinstated due to country wide agitation against Governor’s decision.
In 1985, elections were again held for the State Assembly and once again Rama Rao established supremacy of his party. He won as many as 202 seats in a House of 292. His party emerged as the single largest opposition in the Lok Sabha.
It became for all purposes a part of newly formed Janata Dal, headed by V.P. Singh. In the elections held in 1989, both for the Lok Sabha as well as State Legislative Assembly, the party badly failed. It lost power in the State where Congress (I) was returned to power. It could get only two Lok Sabha seats from the state.
As a result of elections held in 1991 for the Lok Sabha the party captured 13 seats but subsequently there was split in the party and its strength was reduced to seven in 1995. In that year in Andhra Pradesh L.A. it could to capture power and formed government under N.T. Rama Rao but soon there were family fends and his son-in-law Chender Babu Naidu got allegiance of many party MLAs and formed government under his Chief Ministership.
The party is now divided in two factions one by Chander Babu Naidu and other by N.T. Rama Rao’s widow Lakshmi Parvati.
As a result of Lok Sabha elections held in April-May, 1996 TDP headed by Mrs. Parvati was completely routed. It could not win even a single Lok Sabha seat, whereas Naidu group won 16 seats. It has joined United Front government headed by H.D. Dev Gowda. It is also a constituent of Federal Front constituted by four regional party.
The party believes that living standard of the people of India can be raised only through rural development. Special measures should be taken for improving the lot of women, children and weaker sections of society. It wants that strong steps should be taken to check corruption at all levels and unemployed should be given unemployment allowance.
It also wants more financial resources for the states and transfer of powers from the centre to the states. It is not in favour of imposition of Hindi but favours Development of regional languages.
The party has promised imposition of complete prohibition in the state and also make available rice to the poor @ Rs.2/= per kg. It also promised free mid-day meal programme for school children. It stands for the development of Telugu language in the state.
19. Essay on the Bahujan Samaj Party:
For a very long time U.P. was strong hold of Congress and party on the whole claimed itself to be the custodian of the interests of the Dalits and backwards. They in turn extended their whole hearted support to the party which on the basis of their voting strength remained in power for decades, both at the centre as well as the states.
But as the time passed these sections of society began to alienate themselves from this party. It was in this background that on April 1984, a new party called BSP was founded with Kanshi Ram as its President.
The party aims at uplifting the Dalits and down-trodden sections of the society. It believes that it can be possible only when strong hold of Brahmins and Baniyas on the society is completely finished and the Dalits are relieved from their clutches. It believes that such Dalits are in majority in India, therefore, their rule can be the basis of true democracy in the country.
Soon after coming into existence the party could develop some base in Punjab and Haryana. It could capture 9 seats in state legislative Assembly of Punjab and 67 seats that of U.P. In the party U.P. extended co-operation to Samajwadi Party of Mulayam Singh Yadav, who could form government in the state. It could not get any foot-hold in Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh.
Mulayam Singh government did not last long in U.P. when B.S.P. decided to withdraw his support from the government. BJ.P. thereafter extended its support to B.S.P from outside and formed government under the Chief Ministership of Ms. Mayawati.
But because of basic ideological differences the combination could not pull on well and in a short span of about four months, B.J.P. decided to withdraw its support from the government reducing it to minority party in the State Assembly resulting in the fall of the government. The state Assembly was subsequently dissolved.
In 1995, the party had one seat each in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. It had nine seats in Panjab Assembly and one in Haryana Legislative Assembly.
It performance during 1996 Lok Sabha elections was quite impressing. It won 11 Lok Sabha seats. It has quite a good strong hold in U.P.
20. Essay on All India Muslim League:
The party has its foot hold in Kerala, where it could capture some Assembly seats during 1970 and 1977 elections. In 1995, it had 17 seats in Kerala L.A. Its performance as a political party has neither been impressive in the Lok Sabha nor in the state Assemblies except in Kerala.
The party favours protecting interests of the Muslim minorities all over the country. It favours socialism. The main cause of its unpopularity is that the people of India have not forgotten that Muslim League under the Mr. Jinnah was responsible for the partition of the country. Secondly, since India has secular character, the people have developed a sort of elergy for communal parties.
21. Essay on the Bhartiya Jana Sangh:
The party was founded by late Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherjee on the eve of first general elections. After its formation it gained ground in North India and Madhya Pradesh. It also performed well both in the Lok Sabha as well as state Assembly elections held in 1971. It received unfavourable treatment from the mling Congress (I) party during 1975-77 emergency. After the lifting of emergency when Janata Party was formed a large part of the Jana Sangh decided to merge itself with the newly born party. A section still wants to maintain its identity and continues to retain its name under Presidentship of Prof. Balraj Madhok.
The party wants that Hindu culture should be protected and the Muslims of India should be Indianised. It also wants that India should be a Hindu state and partition of the country was a wrong decision. It wants that special status of Kashmir should be ended. It favours democratic system and rule of law.
It is not in favour of bicameralism in the states. It wants unitary system for the country as a whole. It favours nationalisation of main industries and that in foreign policy national interests should be kept above everything else.
The party wants that the states should be given more powers and like many other parties it also wants that financial resources of the country should be so divided that the states become financially less dependent on the Centre. It also wants that the Centre should least interfere in the affairs of the states. It however has not much say in political affairs of the country.
The Role of Regional Parties in Political System of India:
In India regional political parties are being founded in good numbers. There is no region in the country which has no regional parties. Each such party has influence within its own region and over shadows even the national parties at the time of elections in some states.
It thrives on the exploration of ethnic, cultural, communal, lingual and similar other feelings of the people of the region. These protect the interests of the region first and nation later on. These lake up such issues which concern the region and their aim is to capture power in the region but some regional leaders aspire to become national leaders as well and aspire capture power at the national level.
Though at the national level it is felt by many that mush room growth of regional level parties is not in the national interest, but even then large number of national level parties have come into existence and their number is ever increasing for which several causes are responsible.
In some cases these parties come into existence as a protest against too much interference in the affairs of the state while in others because of the over ambitiousness of some regional leaders who feel that they have no future at the national level. Some leaders find a new political party when they find that in the existing political set up they can get nothing.
In some cases regional political parties are founded because regional people find that the central leadership has neglected their economic development and that the region will not develop unless there is a regional party to raise a voice for the region. Still another reason being that some regions wish to maintain their separate entity at all costs and these do so by founding a separate regional party.
Regional level parties have established their utility in India, which becomes clear when these over shadow even the national political parties. These give concrete programmes for the development of the region and way in which regional problems should be solved. These also give expression to the aspiration of the people.
The people of the region extend their support to regional leaders, who form government in the region. Regional political parties draw the attention of the Parliament to regional issues and thus try to influence the policies of Central government.
These also try to make to the people conscious about their social and economic problems and also make efforts to politically educate them so that at the time of next elections they cast their vote consciously.
These have also made the national parties realise that without attending to their problems these cannot expect much from them at the time of next elections. Thus, these have made them feel the importance of balanced regional development approach. Thus, regional political parties have only shown an impact on the regions but have also considerably influenced national political scene.
But at the same time these undermine the importance of the country as a nation. These place region above nation. Thus stand on the way of national unity. Each even regional parties are friction ridden therefore, these divide state people in groups and different camps.
Some regional parties adopt an attitude of confrontation with central leadership. These thus waste their time in confrontations and retard development of the state to which they claim to represent.
The role of regional political parties became very pivotal after 1996 Lok Sabha elections when no national political party could get absolute majority in the Lok Sabha. Regional political parties like D.M.K.; TMC; Asom Gana Prashid and T.D.P decided not to side with B.J.P. which had been returned as the single largest party in the Lok Sabha.
On the other hand those decided to join proposed United Front being sponsored by so called secular forces. With their strength and support United Front was in a position, with the outside support of Congress (I) and some left parties to form government at the Centre.
These parties have joined the government as well. Within the United Front four regional parties have also formed a separated Federal Front. The role of regional political parties in national politics has considerably increased.
22. Problems of the Political Parties:
In the country where there is multi-party system and in which division of the parties has come to stay without any resentment by the electorates. The parties have been coming as well as going out of existence qrite of ten.
Each state has regional parties which play a part at a particular point of time whereas at other times their significance and role very much comes down in state politics. In our system there is too much importance for the leadership. As long as leader remains in the party, it continues, but after his departure party is faced with the problem of disintegration. That is why many political parties are formed in the name of an individual.
This creates several problem for healthy growth of political system.
There is also serious lack of discipline imparty set up. Any member finds that he has some following challenges the authority of leadership of his party. Those who leave their political party are not faced with the problem of starting a political career afresh on the one hand and on the other ac welcome in almost every other party on the other.
There is shortage of political leaders who have national image and whose political career is spotless and who are known for honesty and integrity. That is the reason that in spite of their best efforts opposition parties are not coming together.
Rise of regional parties and regional leadership has also added problems to present day political party system. The party system is also faced with the problem of black money which has made the contesting of election by small political parties very difficult.
This has increased the importance the corrupt and dishonest people and thus sincere people find it difficult to enter the election arena. In case effective measures are not immediately taken the situation is likely to go out of control.
It is healthy to note that both Supreme Court and the Election Commission of India showed keen interest about checking the role of money power during 1996 Lok Sabha and six state-Assembly elections going held in April-May, 1996. It was because of their interest that the elections were not costly and held in a very calm atmosphere.
Indian political party system is faced with the serious problem of criminalisation of politics. In each political party the number of criminals and goondas is increasing and that is making working of principled politics difficult on the one hand and reducing the role of sincere politicians still more problematic on the other.
Most of the political parties are not cadre based. The elections are not periodically held. In most of the cases a leader or few of them wield absolute power and they nominate all office bearers of different committees. Their functioning is undemocratic.
These are also faced with the serious problem of political defection. Because of costly elections these are to depend on donations from moneyed classes and after coming to power parties also considerably try to accommodate donors by giving them different types of favours.
The role of political parties also considerably comes down, if large number of independent members are returned to elected bodies. At the end of every elections in state Assemblies quite a good number of independent candidates win elections.