AAP has expanded its footprint relatively fast
Although the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) did not win in Punjab and Goa, it is within striking distance of joining the elite club of national parties with currently seven members. In comparison with the other national party, the AAP has established its footprint relatively fast. As per Election Commission norms, a party needs to meet any one of the three criteria to qualify as a national party:
- Win at least 11 seats in the Lok Sabha from at least three different states.
- Poll 6% votes in four states in addition to winning four seats in the Lok Sabha.
- Get recognition as a state party in four or more states by winning 3% of legislative assembly seats in those states.
Currently, the AAP has four MPs in the Lok Sabha, and has polled 53.34%, 23.7%, and 6.3% votes in Delhi, Punjab, and Goa assembly elections, respectively. Within less than five years of its birth, the AAP the ruling party in Delhi, the principal opposition in Punjab, and a state recognized party in Goa. Per the second rule above, if the AAP succeeds in getting 6+% vote share in one other state, it would qualify to be a national party.
As a national party, besides being entitled to an exclusive electoral symbol across India, it would entitle the AAP to broadcast/telecast time during state-run general elections during general elections.
LiveMint: AAP in striking distance of national party status, 13 July 2017.