Political parties are the most visible force of democracy.
In order to function properly and remain effective instruments of democracy, a political party must overcome the following four challenges:
- Lack of internal democracy within parties
- Dynastic succession or other unfair advantages
- Money and muscle power
- Absence of meaningful choices to the voters
As political parties face these challenges, there is a growing need to reform the system. Some of the reform measures taken by the government are: Anti-defection law, affidavit requirement and organisational meetings for political parties.
The anti-defection law was introduced to curb the growing trend of elected representatives who changed political parties to become ministers or to get cash rewards.
The affidavit requirement was an order passed by the Supreme Court as a measure to curb the challenge of money and muscle power.
The third reform measure was made by the Election Commission where for all political parties it was mandatory to hold regular elections and also file their income tax returns.
Political parties can also be reformed in two other ways. One is to pressurise political parties through pressure groups, movements and media and the other is to include reformers in the political parties.