The Shinde camp had submitted memorandum to the poll panel seeking allocation of the bow and arrow symbol as the Andheri East assembly bypolls were approaching.
Uddhav Thackeray and Eknath Shinde
The Election Commission on Saturday froze the election symbol of Shiv Sena amid a battle for claim between Uddhav Thackeray and Eknath Shinde. The Shinde camp had submitted memorandum to the poll panel seeking allocation of the bow and arrow symbol as the Andheri East assembly bypolls were approaching. Following this, the commission directed the Thackeray faction to respond by Saturday and furnish comments along with requisite documents latest by 2 pm on October 8.
The faction of the Shiv Sena argued before the Election Commission in New Delhi on Saturday that no immediate decision on allotting or freezing the election symbol should be taken. They said that this is valid because the Eknath Shinde group was not contesting the Andheri East Assembly bypoll, but acting as a proxy of the BJP which has decided to field its candidate.
The party said the sitting MLA (whose death caused a bypoll) belonged to the Thackeray Sena. It also invited the EC to inspect their legal preparation pertaining to providing more documents to prove itself to be the real Sena. The Shinde group had urged the commission to decide urgently on the symbol to prevent its misuse by the Thackeray Sena. Though his numbers in the state Assembly and Lok Sabha is fewer than the rival group, Thackeray’s strength in the Council and Rajya Sabha is more. The numbers made available claimed that the Thackeray Sena has more primary members and office-bearers at the state and national level.
With agency inputs