The Election Commission on Thursday sent show-cause notices to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Trinamool, and Communist Party of India (CPI) asking them to explain why their national party status shouldn't be revoked.
The aforementioned parties performed poorly in the April-May general elections, forcing the top polling body to initiate action against them.
They have been directed to respond by August 5.
According to EC, for a party to get the coveted national party status it has to get at least 6% votes each in a minimum of four states or win 2% of total seats in Lok Sabha from at least three states.
If a party is recognized as a state party in at least four states, then also it can qualify as a national party.
Now, NCP, CPI, and Trinamool don't fulfill the aforementioned criteria.
Their national status tag was in danger after 2014 polls as well, but EC took a softer approach at the time.
In 2016, EC changed its rules and began reviewing national and state party status of political parties every 10 years instead of five.
But EC might not agree to any such demand this time.
To note, NCP boss Sharad Pawar and Trinamool matriarch Mamata Banerjee had full five years to change their fates, but they failed to connect with masses.
In 2014, NCP won six seats, and this time only five. The party also fared poorly in Maharashtra polls.
Similarly, Trinamool shrunk from winning 34 seats in 2014 to 22 this time. CPI won two seats in 2019.
If EC decides to strip Trinamool, CPI, and NCP of their national status tag, they will not be able to contest elections throughout the country using one symbol.
This means, that the clock symbol will not be reserved for NCP candidates.
They will be able to contest polls on the said symbol only in states where NCP is recognized as a state party.
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