Loksabha election

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

SC nod to MNS' rail engine symbol

In a reprieve to Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), the Supreme Court on Monday directed the Election Commission to allot the party a common symbol for the assembly elections in Maharashtra.

The apex court asked the EC to allot the common symbol ‘railway engine’ to the MNS, subject to the condition that any other candidate who has won the last election on the same symbol would be allowed to retain it for contesting this poll.

The order was passed by a bench comprising Chief Justice KG Balakrishnan and Justice P Sathasivam on a petition filed by MNS seeking to contest around 150 assembly seats on a common symbol. “It’s a major, strategic victory for our three-year old party. In the absence of an exclusive symbol, it was difficult to reach out to people. The SC verdict will help us perform better,” Raj Thackeray said after the judgement.

The bench directed allocation of common symbols ‘coconut’ and ‘whistle’ to the Jan Surya Shakti party and the Bahujan Vikas Aaghadi, respectively. The parties are contesting around 100 seats each. All three parties, initially registered as unrecognised, had sought election symbols. As per the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order 2005, a common symbol is allotted to a recognised party that wins 6% votes in the previous election, besides returning at least two candidates to the assembly and a candidate to the Lok Sabha.

Source : Economic Times


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