EC allocates new names, poll symbols to Shiv Sena factions

The development came two days after the EC froze the name of Shiv Sena and its iconic bow-and-arrow symbol ahead of the upcoming by-elections to the Andheri East constituency

Eknath Shinde (left); Uddhav Thackeray
Eknath Shinde (left); Uddhav Thackeray
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IANS

The Election Commission on Monday allotted new names and poll symbols to the two factions of the erstwhile Shiv Sena, which split into two groups led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and ex-Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.

The Thackeray group has been given the name of 'Shiv Sena-Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray' and it has been allotted a new symbol of a flaming torch.

The breakaway Shinde group has been allotted the identity of 'Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena' and it has been ordered to submit new options for a symbol by 10 AM on Tuesday.

The developments came two days after the ECI froze the name of Shiv Sena and its iconic bow-and-arrow symbol ahead of the upcoming by-elections to the Andheri East constituency.

Shiv Sena-Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray deputy leader Sushma Andheri has welcomed the EC's decision and said nobody needs an introduction to Balasaheb Thackeray's Shiv Sena, now led by Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray.

South Mumbai MP of the Shiv Sena-Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray Arvind Sawant also hailed the move and said Uddhav Thackeray is "the face of the party", and accused the Shinde faction of "stealing everything, the party, is symbol, the Thackeray family name, etc.", but now the EC decision has cleared the air.

Other Shiv Sena-Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray leaders like Kishore Tiwari and Kishori Pednekar also gave a warm reception to the party's new credentials and brand new poll symbol.

The ECI rejected the symbols -- trident and mace -- demanded by the two factions on grounds that they had religious connotations.

Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena spokesperson Sheetal Mhatre clamed that these are stop-gap arrangements till the Assembly elections and the Shinde group will get the original name and symbol later.

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