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High Court directs Election Commission to reconsider the common party symbol case

February 6, 2009

Based on a writ petition filed by Praja Rajyam complaining against the Election Commission's action in refusing to allot a common symbol, a Division Bench comprising of Justice B Prakasa Rao and Justice Bhavani Prasad while disposing of the writ on Friday directed the Election Commission of India to reconsider the issue of allotment of a common election symbol.

The Division Bench granted three weeks time to the Election Commission to pass fresh orders. Appearing for the Praja Rajyam, V Venkata Ramana said that the Election Commission had allotted a common symbol to the TRS under similar circumstances but was refusing to treat his client in the same manner. According to the rules governing the allotment of symbols, a political party would get a permanent symbol based on the votes its candidates poll in the general elections preceding the application.

These rules did not contemplate a situation where a political party that had a massive following and a huge membership comes into elections and makes an application for Common Symbol. The Chief Electoral Officer, IV Subba Rao is inclined to see the reason in the Praja Rajyam's argument on the ground the popular following enjoyed by the Praja Rajyam represented will of the people, big or small and this could not be reflected through votes properly unless a common symbol was granted.

Back in January this year, PRP said it will seek court intervention over common symbol for the upcoming General and Assembly elections. The party has sought common symbol for the party out of 59 free symbols.



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