Election Commission to hear Shiv Sena’s warring factions on January 5

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The poll panel had also asked them to exchange the documents, submitted to the poll panel, with each other. File

The poll panel had also asked them to exchange the documents, submitted to the poll panel, with each other. File
| Photo Credit: PTI

The Election Commission on Monday fixed January 5 as the next date for hearing the arguments of the Shiv Sena’s warring factions led by Uddhav Thackeray and Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.

The decision was taken after lawyers from both factions during a hearing on Monday sought more time to examine documents submitted by the rival groups to claim the party name and symbol.

Senior counsels Kapil Sibal and Mahesh Jethmalani appeared before the full Election Commission on behalf of the Thackeray faction and the Shinde faction of the Shiv Sena respectively.

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The Thackeray faction of the Shiv Sena has been claiming that it does not recognise the other group.

“We do not recognise any group. Shiv Sena is where Thackeray is,” Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Raut, who belongs to the Thackeray faction, told reporters in New Delhi.

Last month, the commission had asked the Shiv Sena factions to submit fresh documents to back their claim to the party’s name and its symbol by November 23.

The poll panel had also asked them to exchange the documents, submitted to the poll panel, with each other.

In an interim order in October, the commission had barred the two factions from using the party name or its ‘bow and arrow’ symbol.

Later, it had allotted ‘Shiv Sena-Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray’ as the party name for the Thackeray faction, and ‘Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena’ (Balasaheb’s Shiv Sena) as the name for the Eknath Shinde group of the party.

The Election Commission had said the interim order will continue “till the final determination of the dispute”.

Mr. Shinde had rebelled against Mr. Thackeray’s leadership, claiming the support of 40 of the Shiv Sena’s 55 MLAs and 12 of its 18 members in Lok Sabha.

Following Mr. Thackeray’s resignation as chief minister of the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress coalition, Mr. Shinde became Chief Minister with the support of the BJP.

Para 15 of the Election Symbols Order provides for the hearing of representatives of the sections or groups as desired to be heard.

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