India has a multi-party system with recognition accorded to national and state and district level parties. The status is reviewed periodically by the Election Commission of India. Other political parties that wish to contest local, state or national elections are required to be registered by the Election Commission of India (ECI). Registered parties are upgraded as recognized national or state level parties based upon objective criteria. A recognized party enjoys privileges like a reserved party symbol,[A] free broadcast time on state run television and radio, a consultation in setting of election dates and giving input in setting electoral rules and regulations.
This listing is according to the Indian general election, 2014 and Legislative Assembly elections and any party aspiring to state or national party status must fulfil at least one of the concerned criteria. In addition, national and state parties have to fulfill these conditions for all subsequent Lok Sabha or State elections, or else they lose their status. As per latest publication from Election Commission of India, the total number of parties registered was 1841, with 7 national parties, 51 state parties and 1785 unrecognised parties.