Eknath Shinde-led Sena faction gets ‘bow and arrow’ symbol

Tags: National News

The Election Commission of India on 17 February ordered the Eknath Shinde faction to be renamed the Shiv Sena, the commission also said that the arrow and bow would be retained as election symbols by Eknath Shinde's party.

An overview of the news

  • Both the Shiv Sena factions (Eknath Shinde and Uddhav Thackeray) are fighting for the party's bow and arrow symbol after Shinde (the current chief minister of Maharashtra) rebelled against Thackeray last year.

  • The Election Commission, in its 78-page order, said the current constitution of Shiv Sena is "undemocratic".

  • Uddhav Thackeray was the chief minister of Maharashtra before Shinde rebelled and took over in June 2022.

  • Both the factions are fighting to keep the original name and symbol of the party to represent the "real" Shiv Sena.

  • Shiv Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray said the Election Commission's order recognizing the Eknath Shinde faction as the real Shiv Sena was "dangerous for democracy", and he would challenge it in the Supreme Court.

How does EC decide who gets the symbol?

  • The question of a split in a political party outside the legislature is decided by para 15 of the Emblems Order, 1968.

  • Accordingly, the Election Commission of India (ECI) may take into account all available facts and circumstances and conduct a majority test.

  • The decision of the Election Commission shall be binding on all such rival sections or groups that have emerged after partition.

  • This applies to disputes between recognized national and state parties.

  • For splits in registered but unrecognised parties, the Election Commission usually advises the two factions to resolve their differences internally or approach the court.

Election Commission of India

  • It is a permanent and independent body established by the Constitution of India to ensure free and fair elections in India.

  • It was established as per the Constitution on 25 January 1950.

  • It administers the elections to the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, State Assemblies, State Legislative Councils and the President and Vice President of the country.

  • It has nothing to do with elections to panchayats and municipalities in the states. For this the Constitution of India provides for a separate State Election Commission.

  • Basically there is only one Chief Election Commissioner in the Election Commission.

  • Currently it consists of two Election Commissioners.

  • The President appoints Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners.

  • They have a tenure of six years, or up to the age of 65 years.

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