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Sena vs Sena: SC refuses to stay EC's order on Shiv Sena symbol dispute

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to stay the Election Commission's decision to give the party name "Shiv Sena" and the symbol "Bow and Arrow" to the faction led by Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.
A bench of Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud and also comprising Justices PS Narsimha and JB Pardiwala issued notice to the Shinde camp and Election Commission on the plea and listed the matter after two weeks. Meanwhile, the SC refused to stay the EC order and said, "We cannot stay an order at this stage".
SC clarified that Uddhav Thackeray's camp can pursue other remedies of law if any action is taken which is not based on EC order.
Senior Advocate NK Kaul, appearing for the respondent, assured SC that they will not issue a whip and not precipitate the disqualification proceeding.
Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Uddhav Thackeray insisted SC for interim relief and said that they are taking office after office and urged to pass a status quo order.
Senior Advocate NK Kaul, appearing for the respondent, raised preliminary objections on the maintainability of the plea filed by Uddhav Thackeray.
Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Uddhav Thackeray camp, said that the EC passed the order on the test of the majority in the legislative wing.
Sibal apprised the court that their camp has a majority in Rajya Sabha, but a rival faction got the symbol due to the majority in the legislative wing.
Senior Advocate NK Kaul, appearing for the respondent, said for recognition of political party, number of votes, percentage of votes etc have to be seen.
Kaul, appearing for the respondent, said ECI examines the entire structure of the party.
The court was hearing the plea by Uddhav Thackeray challenging the Election Commission's move to allot the party name "Shiv Sena" and the symbol "Bow and Arrow" to the faction led by Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.
Uddhav, in his plea filed on Monday, said that ECI failed to consider that his faction enjoys the majority in the Legislative Council and Rajya Sabha.
Uddhav Thackeray in the plea, also submitted that the legislative majority alone, in this case, could not be the basis for passing of the order by EC.
Challenging the EC decision, Uddhav Thackeray said the poll panel was erroneous in its decision and said that, "the entire edifice of the impugned order (EC's decision) is based upon the purported legislative majority of the Respondent (Shinde) which is an issue to be determined by the top court in the Constitution Bench".
"The ECI has failed to consider that the Petitioner enjoys a majority in the Legislative Council (12 out of 12) and Rajya Sabha (3 out of 3). It is submitted that in a case of this kind where there is a conflict even in the legislative majority i.e., Lok Sabha on the one hand and Rajya Sabha on the other as well as Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council, more particularly, having regard to the fact that there is a possibility of the alleged members losing their right of membership, the legislative majority alone is not a safe guide to determine as to who holds the majority for the purposes of adjudicating a petition of the Symbols Order," the plea said.
"In these circumstances, it is respectfully submitted that the legislative majority test cannot be the test which can be applied for the purposes of determination of the present dispute," it added. (ANI)

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