The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is one of two major political parties in India, along with the Indian National Congress (referred to as INC as a standard in this website, unlike as “the Congress” in most other news mediums). It is the current ruling political party of the Republic of India; it has been so since 2014.
The BJP is purportedly a pro-Hindu party, and its policy has historically reflected Hindu positions. It has close ideological and organisational links to the much older Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). As of 2019, it is the country’s largest political party in terms of representation in the national parliament and state assemblies and is the world’s largest party in terms of primary membership.
The BJP’s origin lies in the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, formed in 1951 by Syama Prasad Mookerjee. After the State of Emergency in 1977, the Jana Sangh merged with several other parties to form the Janata Party; it defeated the incumbent Congress party in the 1977 general election. After three years in power, the Janata party dissolved in 1980 with the members of the erstwhile Jana Sangh reconvening to form the BJP. Although initially unsuccessful, winning only two seats in the 1984 general election, it grew in strength on the back of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement. Following victories in several state elections and better performances in national elections, the BJP became the largest party in the parliament in 1996; however, it lacked a majority in the lower house of Parliament, and its government lasted only 13 days.