NCERT Notes Class 10 Social Science Civics Chapter 6 Political Parties

NCERT Notes Class 10 Social Science Political Science Chapter 6 Political Parties

Chapter 6 Political Parties NCERT Notes

Chapter Name

Political Parties Notes


CBSE Class 10

Textbook Name

Democratic Politics- II Class 10

Related Readings

  • Notes for Class 10
  • Notes for Class 10 Political Science
  • NCERT Solutions for Political Parties 


In this chapter, we will discuss the political parties as vehicles of federal sharing of political power and as negotiators of social divisions in the field of democratic politics. Moreover, we will discuss the nature and working of political parties in our country ‘India’.


Political parties are one of the essential parts of democracy. We can also say that without political parties, there is no democracy at all. Whenever we visit remote areas of our country, most people don’t know about our constitution or laws, but they know about our political parties and its leaders. Some of them also blame their leaders for their work.

Meaning of Political parties

  • Basically, Political parties are a group of people who come together to contest elections and hold power in the Government. Such people are called as Political leaders. They promise to work for the betterment and development of society and demand the Public to vote for them to come in power to bring some change for society.

3 Major Components of Political Parties

  • Political Leaders
  • Active Members
  • Followers

Functions Of Political Parties

Political parties perform a variety of functions to work in a democracy. Main Functions are:
  1. Parties Contest Elections: Contesting elections is one of the most prominent functions of the political parties. The elections are fought by the candidates chosen by their top political leaders or members. For example: In India, candidates are chosen by the top party leaders.
  1. Political parties put forward different policies and programmes: Political parties put forward various policies and programmes for the Public’s betterment and development. And the voters vote for their favourite candidate who is most capable and Committed for their betterment and development.
  1. Political parties are lawmakers: Political parties are also known as lawmakers who debate and get the bills passed through the legislature to make the laws.
  1. Parties Form and Run Government: Political parties recruit candidates, fight elections through them, train them and make them ministers in the cabinet to form and run Government.
  1. Parties who lose elections, play a role as opposition: The parties who lose elections, play a role in the Government. Their main work is to criticize and highlight the issues where the ruling Party is lacking.
  1. Parties Shape Public Opinion: Political parties raise and highlight issues by their members in the different parts of the country. Some of the pressure groups are also an extension of the political parties, which play a significant role in influencing and shaping public opinion.
  1. Parties Provide People access to government machinery and welfare schemes: Parties provide general public access to government machinery and welfare schemes. It’s easy for the general public to approach a local party leader instead of a government official. There is also a Responsibility on the part of Political Parties to perform well. Otherwise, the Public may reject them in next elections.

Political Parties in India

In a democracy, every citizen is free to form a political party. A large number of Political Parties exist in our country ‘India’.

One Party System

The countries where only one Government can control and run the Government is called a one-party system. For example: In China, the only Communist Party is allowed to rule over China. This is not a democratic opinion, and every person is not allowed to form a political party or to contest elections.

  • Any democratic system must allow at least two competent parties to compete in elections and come in power legally.

Two-Party System

  • In some countries, only two parties have serious chances to win the national legislature’s elections. Other few parties may exist, contest and win elections with few seats, but the power would revolve around only two parties. This is known as The Two-Party System. For example: In The USA and UK.

Multi-Party System

  • When more than two parties are allowed to come in power on their strength or in an alliance with other parties, it is called The Multi-Party System. In this system, the Government is formed by a coalition of various parties. When several parties join their hands to form a government, it is called an Alliance or a Front. For example: In India, there were 3 Major Alliance in the 2004 parliamentary elections. The National Democratic Alliance, the United

Progressive Alliance and the Left Front. This might lead to political stability because of conflicting interests and opinions.

Types of Political Parties

There are two types of Political Parties.

  • National Parties.
  • State Parties.

National Parties

  • Parties with their units and scope in various states of a country are known as National Parties. All of the units follow the same policies and strategies as decided by the central unit at the national level.
  • To form a political party, they have to register themselves with the election commission. They are given with a unique party sign or symbol. Official candidates of the parties have the power to use these symbols.

National Political Parties

  • A party which secures at least 6 per cent of the total votes in Lok Sabha elections or Assembly elections in 4 states and wins at least four seats in Lok Sabha elections is recognized national Party.

As per the Recorded data of 2018, there were 7 Recognized Political Parties,

All India Trinamool Congress (AITC)

  • Founded: 1 January 1998 under the leadership of Mamta Banerjee.
  • Party Symbol: Flower and Grass.
  • Highly Committed to Secularism and Federalism.
  • Has been in power in Bengal since 2011.
  • Also has a presence in the East Indian States like Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh and Tripura.

Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP)

  • We were founded: 1984 under the leadership of Kanshi Ram.
  • They are upholding Bahujan Samaj Development which includes, Dalits, Adivasis, OBCs, and Religious Minorities.
  • Draws inspiration from the ideas and teachings of Sahu Maharaj, Mahatma Phule, Periyar Ramaswami Naicker and Babasaheb Ambedkar.
  • Main Base in Uttar Pradesh’s state and substantial presence in neighbouring states like Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Uttarakhand, Delhi and Punjab.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)

  • We were founded in 1980 by reviving the erstwhile Bharatiya Jana Sangh, formed by Syama Prasad Mukherjee in 1951.
  • Follow the footsteps of Deendayal Upadhyaya and his ideas of integral humanism and Antyodaya.
  • Believe in Cultural nationalism (or ‘Hindutva’)
  • Came to power in 1998 as the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) including several regional parties.
  • Came as the largest Party with 303 members in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Currently acting as the ruling Party, i.e., NDA government at the Centre.

Communist Party of India (CPI)

  • Founded: Founded in 1925
  • Believes in Marxism-Leninism, secularism and democracy
  • They are opposing the forces of secessionism and communalism.
  • Significantly Active in the states of Kerala, West Bengal, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
  • Went weak after the Major split in the Party in 1964, which led to the CPI formation (M).

Communist Party of India – Marxist (CPI-M)

  • Founded: Founded in 1964.
  • Believes in Marxism Leninism.
  • Supports socialism, secularism and democracy.
  • Opposes imperialism and communalism.
  • Objective: Socio-Economic Justice in India.
  • Intensely Active in West Bengal, Kerala and Tripura, especially among the poor, factory workers, farmers, agricultural labourers and the intelligentsia(a highly educated group of people).

Indian National Congress (INC)

  • Popularly known as Congress Party.
  • One of the Oldest Parties of the world.
  • Founded in 1885. And has experienced various significant splits.
  • Played a significant role in making and running the Government in India after independence for several decades under Jawaharlal Nehru’s Leadership.
  • Leader of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government from 2004 to 2019.

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)

  • Founded: Founded in 1999, after a split in Congress Party.
  • Supports democracy, Gandhian secularism, equity, social justice and federalism.
  • Intensely Active in Maharashtra and subsequently present in Meghalaya, Manipur and Assam.
  • A coalition partner in Maharashtra in alliance with the Congress. Since 2004, a member of the UPA(United Progressive Alliance).

State Political Parties

  • A party which secures at least 6 per cent of the total seats in state legislative assembly elections and wins at least two seats is RecogRecognizedtate Political Parties.

For Example: Samajwadi Party, Rashtriya Janata Dal, Biju Janata Dal, Sikkim Democratic Front, Mizo National Front and Telangana Rashtra Samithi.

Challenges to Political Parties

There are 4 Major Challenge in the working of Political Parties:

Lack of Internal Democracy within Parties

  • Generally, the administrative and decision making power lies in the hands of top leaders of the Party. There is no organized, unique election process inside the Party to choose the designated recipients. Sometimes it leads to the misuse of power by top leaders in the name of the Party. This leads to the Lack of Internal Democracy within Parties.

Dynastic Succession

  • There is less possibility for an ordinary member to rise to the Party’s top. There is no organized specific process to choose the designatory of the parties. Mostly the family members of the top leaders are given priorities. This is unfair to the other members of that Party.

Money and Muscle Power 

  • Third Challenge is the Growing Role of Money and Muscle Power. Especially during the times of elections, parties are focused on winning elections. They use short tricks to win elections. Parties assign party tickets to criminals, musclemen or rich business people who have more significant influence over society and can easily win elections. The increasing participation of such people in elections is a growing terror over democracy.

Unable to offer Meaningful Choice to Voters

  • In our country ‘India’, it seems that the political parties cannot provide meaningful and valuable policies and programmes before elections to the general public. They offer almost similar programs or policies with a little bit different in the implementation process. There is a lack of options available in front of the Public while choosing their leaders during elections.

How can parties be reformed?

In a democracy final decision is made by political leaders who represent their Political Parties. People can replace them only using elections with another set of political leaders.

Recent Efforts to reform political parties and its leaders

  • Amendment of Indian Constitution prevents MLAs and MPs from changing parties to become ministers and for cash rewards. This is also known as

Suggestions to reform Political Parties

  • As per the Supreme Court of India’s ruling, it’s mandatory for contesting candidates to file an affidavit giving details of the property and the criminal cases pending against them.
  • As per the Election Commission’s instructions, political parties must hold organized national elections and file their income tax returns. There should be democracy inside the political parties.
  • Laws should be framed to regulate the internal functioning of the political parties legally.
  • Open Elections to higher Posts in Political Parties.
  • ⅓ Tickets should be mandatorily assigned to women along with a quota for women in a decision-making body.
  • Fair use of Government aids and grants in the Election expenses in cash, paper, petrol, vehicles, telephone, etc.

There are also two other ways to reform such political parties

  • People can put pressure on political parties by way of filing petitions, publicity and agitations.
  • By the use of Media with extensive Public Participation.
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