Swatantra Party was founded in the year 1959 by leaders opposing the socialistic policies of the Congress government. Some of the prominent leaders of the time including C Rajagopalachari, Minoo Masani and N G Ranga collaborated to form a liberal and conservative party. The party stood for market-based economy and the dismantling of the license raj.
In its first party convention held in Bombay on 1st August 1959, several regional parties and erstwhile Kings and Princes including the Maharajas of Jaipur and Patiala joined the alliance to form a strong liberal front opposing the socialist and communist political ideology then dominating Indian political discourse.
Other distinguished members of Swatantra included Dayabhai Patel the son of Sardar Vallabhai Patel, businessmen like Homi Mody, A D Shroff and experienced members of the civil service like H M Patel, Narayan Dandekar and J M Lobo Prabhu. N G Ranga went on to become the first party president while, Minoo Masani was elected as the secretary of the party.