The Shiv Sena name and symbol will remain with Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde’s camp, and the “mashaal” or flaming torch symbol with Uddhav Thackeray for now, the Supreme Court said today, assuring status quo on the issue that has been the bone of contention since the split of the party last year.
The court has agreed to hear the petition from Team Thackeray, which has challenged the Election Commission’s order handing the Shiv Sena name and its “bow and arrow” symbol to the Shinde faction.
Mr Thackeray had sought status quo till the matter is decided. Kapil Sibal, who was representing him in court, told a bench led by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud that they want protection.
“We want protection. We don’t want our properties and bank accounts to be taken over,” Mr Sibal said, pointing out that the parliamentary office of the Shiv Sena was taken over by the Shinde faction yesterday.
The court said it cannot put a freeze on the Election Commission’s order “at this stage”. The Thackeray camp can use legal challenges if any action is taken that is not based on the Election Commission’s order.
Team Shinde has contended that the matter has already been heard and rejected by the High Court and the Election Commission allowed to go ahead and take a decision.
Why should the Udhav Thackeray group come to the Supreme Court directly, and why should the court intervene, they questioned.