Kali Shankar vs. Election Commission Of India And Another[PIL No. – 1397 of 2020]

Background

A petition was filed by Kali Shankar in the Allhabad HC against the issues relating the election symbols allotted by the Election Commission of India to the contesting candidates in accordance with the Representation of People Act, 1951 and the Election Symbols (Reservation & Allotment) Order, 1968.

Issues Raised

1.Under Order 16-A of the Order of 1968, the Election Commission of India is empowered to suspend or withdraw recognition of a recognized political party for its failure to observe Model Code of Conduct or further to direct to follow lawful directions and instructions of the Commission.

2.The reserved election symbol for a political party is a national symbol too; hence, necessary directions must be issued to the Commission for freezing the same and further, to the recognized political parties for not misusing the symbols reserved.

3.The concept of election symbols is applicable only for the purpose of elections and such symbols cannot be used as a logo of any political party.

4.If the political parties are permitted to use the election symbols perpetually, for the purposes other than elections, then that would be highly unjust and discriminatory, as the candidates, who are not affiliated with recognized parties, would not be having to propagate their election symbols perpetually.

Order

Learned counsel appearing on behalf of Election Commission of India wanted sometime to examine the entire issue involved in the petition and further, to file a counter to the same. Time prayed for is allowed by the Division Bench of Allahabad High Court comprised of Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Piyush Agrawal.

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