New Delhi, March 26: The day came with a temporary relief for TTV Dhinakaran as the Supreme Court Bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, Justice Deepak Gupta and Justice Sanjiv Khanna directed the Election Commission of India(ECI) to allot the candidates of the TTV Dhinakaran faction a common symbol for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections 2019.
Notably, Dinakaran's faction is contesting in a total of 40 parliamentary and 19 Assembly constituencies of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in the upcoming by-polls and Lok Sabha elections.
While directing so the Court, however, elucidated that the allotment of a common symbol in any ways will not provide any recognition to TTV Dhinakaran faction as a political party under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act of 1951.
The Court while clarifying that Dinakaran's faction had no exclusive access to the 'pressure cooker' symbol, said,
"The claim of the petitioner (Dhinakaran) to the common symbol of pressure cooker in an exclusive manner cannot be accepted or acknowledged."
Moreover, the order is a temporary relief to ensure a level playing field during the elections. Apparently, Dinakaran's faction will have to undergo the entire procedure for registration of their group as a political party.
The bench was dealing with an appeal moved by Dinakaran against the High Court order, contending that his party is eligible under Para 15 of the Symbol (Reservation and Allotment) Order, 1968 to claim the Two-Leaves symbol. The criteria ask for the majority support, ability to fulfil all the aims and objects of the party.
Pertinently, the Delhi HC verdict endorsed the decision of the Election Commission of India (ECI) to like the ‘Two Leaves’ symbol to the AIADMK group led by Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam.
The matter was heard earlier in the morning as today it was the last date for filing of nomination papers.
As per the fact, AIADMK party split into two factions after the demise of AIADMK supremo J Jayalalithaa on December 5, 2016. Out of which one was led by TTV Dhinakaran, Sasikala and deputy CM, O. Panneerselvam, whereas the second one was led by Tamil Nadu chief minister EK Palaniswami.
EK Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam later came together to oust Sasikala and TTV Dhinakaran from the party.
In 2017, the Election Commission allotted the "Two Leaves" symbol to the EPS-OPS faction stating that their faction has majority support of members in the legislative as well as in organizational wings.