Allocation of Election Symbols by Election Commission of India (ECI)

  • IASbaba
  • February 20, 2023
  • 0
Governance, Indian Polity & Constitution
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Context: ECI has recognised Eknath Shinde group as official “Shiv Sena”, allowing them to use the official “Bow & Arrow” symbol and “Shiv Sena” name.

Sadiq Ali case

  • The ECI has applied the tests mentioned in the 1971 Supreme Court judgment in Sadiq Ali v. Election Commission of India.
  • In the Sadiq Ali case, it was held that in matters of disputes among groups of a political party, the test of majority support among the members of the ‘organizational and legislature wings’ of the party was the critical test to decide the dispute.
  • It includes the Test of aims and objects of the Party Constitution, Test of Party Constitution and Test of Majority.

The 1968 Order

  • On the question of a split in a political party outside the legislature, Para 15 of the Symbols Order, 1968, states that the decision of the Commission shall be binding on all such rival sections or groups.
  • This applies to disputes in recognised national and state parties (like the Shiv Sena).
  • For splits in registered but unrecognized parties, the ECI usually advises the warring factions to resolve their differences internally or to approach the court.
  • The first case to be decided under the 1968 Order was the first split in the Indian National Congress in 1969.

Election Symbols:

  • Political parties are allotted the symbols by the Election Commission of India under the Election Symbols (Reservation & Allotment) Order, 1968.
  • A reserved symbol is one that is allocated to a registered political party while a free symbol is available to be allocated to non-recognized parties and independent candidates.
  • Paragraph 4 of the order deals with the allotment of symbols.
  • Paragraph 5 classifies the symbol into reserved and free symbols.
  • Paragraph 8 of the Election Symbols Order deals with the choice and allotment of symbols to candidates of national and state parties.

Registration of Political Parties:

  • According to the Election Commission, any party seeking registration has to apply to the Commission within a period of 30 days following the date of its formation as per guidelines prescribed by the Commission
  • It is in exercise of the powers conferred by Article 324 of the Constitution of India and Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
  • The registration of all political parties is governed by the provisions of Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.

Source: Indian Express

Previous Year Question

Q.1) Consider the following statements:

  1. In India, there is no law restricting the candidates from contesting in one Lok Sabha election from three constituencies.
  2. In 1991 Lok Sabha Election, Shri Devi Lal contested from three Lok Sabha constituencies.
  3. As per the existing rules, if a candidate contests in one Lok Sabha election from many constituencies, his/her party should bear the cost of bye-elections to the constituencies vacated by him/her in the event of him/her winning in all the constituencies.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct? (2020)

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. 1 and 3
  4. 2 and 3


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