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Samajwadi Party feud: Election Commission to take call on party’s ‘cycle’ symbol today

The Election Commission of India is all set to hear the Samajwadi Party’s warring factions led by Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son Akhilesh Yadav to settle the dispute over control of the party and its election symbol of ‘cycle’.

According to reports, the Commission has asked both to appear before it today at 12.30 pm.

“The ECI will hear arguments from both sides before deciding on whom to award the party symbol ‘cycle’,” an EC source told the All India Radio.

The commission’s action came a week after both the factions led by Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh and Akhilesh claimed their stake over the party symbol.

Mulayam Singh had first approached the Commission on January 2, a day after he was dislodged as the party chief by Akhilesh and his uncle and close confidante Ramgopal Yadav at an emergency national party executive meeting in Lucknow.

Ramgopal approached the poll body the next day to stake Akhilesh’s claim over the party and its symbol.

While Ramgopal had submitted affidavits signed by party MPs, MLAs, MLCs and delegates supporting the Chief Minister, the other side has maintained that as per the party’s constitution, Mulayam Singh Yadav is still the party chief.

On Monday, Muayam and Ramgopal met Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi separately asking him to speed up the process.

The Commission wants to settle the matter before 17th of this month when the process of nomination begins for the first phase of polling in Uttar Pradesh.

The ‘cycle’ symbol faces the threat of being frozen before the Assembly polls, if the Election Commission is not able to decide which of the two factions commands majority in the organisation. In such a scenario, the Commission will ask both factions to fight polls under new names and new symbols till the dispute is resolved.

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