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EC clears new Shiv Sena names, flaming torch as symbol for Uddhav group

The Uddhav-led faction has been allotted the “flaming torch” (mashaal) as its poll symbol; the Shinde-led faction has been told to submit a fresh list of three symbols by 10 am on Tuesday.

Uddhav Thackeray and and Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde. (File Photo)

IN AN interim order on Monday, the Election Commission (EC) allotted the name Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) to the party faction led by Uddhav Thackeray, while the faction led by Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde will be called Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena.

The Uddhav-led faction has been allotted the “flaming torch” (mashaal) as its poll symbol; the Shinde-led faction has been told to submit a fresh list of three symbols by 10 am on Tuesday.

Last week, while ordering an interim freeze on the party’s bow-and-arrow symbol, the EC had asked both sides to submit their choice of three names and symbols by Monday.

The Uddhav-led faction had listed the trishul (trident), rising sun and mashaal, in order of preference, as its poll symbol choices, and Shiv Sena (Balasaheb Thackeray), Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) and Shiv Sena (Balasaheb Prabodhankar Thackeray), in order of preference, as interim party names.

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The Shinde-led faction had listed the trishul, rising sun and gada (mace) as poll symbol choices, and Shiv Sena (Balasaheb Thackeray), Balsahebanchi Shiv Sena and Shiv Sena Balasahebanchi as interim party names.

In separate letters to the two factions, the EC informed them of its interim decision, till it takes a call on the rival claims on the party name and symbol.

The EC refused to allot the name Shiv Sena (Balasaheb Thackerey) to either side – the first choice of both the factions. It rejected the “trishul” and “gada” as poll symbols, saying these have religious connotations. It also pointed out that the “rising sun” was reserved for the DMK in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.

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Both the factions welcomed the EC’s decision on Monday. “We will take the name and symbol allotted to us to every house. The name has Shiv Sena, Uddhav, Balasaheb and Thackeray. It is basically the whole Shiv Sena family,” said Aaditya Thackeray, leader of the Uddhav-led faction which also released a poster of its new name and symbol.

“We are happy and satisfied that we have got the symbols and names as per the suggestions given by us,” said Vinayak Raut, party MP. Asked about the party name allotted to the Shinde faction, he said: “They cannot do anything without using Balasaheb’s name. In fact, whatever they have is because of Balasaheb. I dare them to use the names of Modi or Shah, and win. They are just a front, the actual party behind them is the BJP. The Shinde faction is just a puppet of the BJP.”

Earlier in the day, the Uddhav-led Sena had approached the Delhi High Court, seeking quashing of the EC’s October 8 interim order freezing the party name and symbol, ahead of the high-stakes November 3 Andheri (East) Assembly bypoll.

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“It is the victory of Hindutva ideology of Balasaheb Thackeray. We are the true heir of his ideology,” said Shinde. “We will submit a fresh list of symbols,” he said.

“We are happy that we have got the name Balsahebanchi Shiv Sena. We always said that we are the Shiv Sena which follows the ideology of the Balasaheb,” said Deepak Kesarkar, Cabinet Minister and leader of the Shinde faction.

First published on: 10-10-2022 at 20:04 IST
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