Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Sunday said the Shiv Sena faction led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde will “succeed” when the Election Commission of India takes a final decision on proprietary over the party name and election symbol.
Speaking to reporters here, Fadnavis said he was not surprised at the Election Commission’s interim decision on Saturday barring the Shiv Sena factions led by Uddhav Thackeray and Eknath Shinde from using the party name and its election symbol ‘bow and arrow’ in the bypoll to Andheri East Assembly seat in Mumbai scheduled on November 3.
The ECI has taken the decision as per its laid down procedure, the senior BJP leader said.
“I think when the ECI takes the final decision on the claims made by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Uddhav Thackeray on proprietary over the Shiv Sena name and symbol, CM Shinde will succeed,” he added.
Maharashtra minister Deepak Kesarkar said, “We have the majority as maximum MLAs and MPs are with the camp led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde. Still, the ECI has frozen the symbol, but we will continue our battle.” “We have not even filed our affidavit before the ECI, because the majority has been with us. We may file it tomorrow,” he said.
He also hit out at the Thackeray camp, saying they were ready with alternate symbols when the ECI froze the original party symbol.
“It seems they (Thackeray camp) have no affection for the bow and arrow symbol,” he said.
The Thackeray faction deliberately wasted time during the previous ECI hearings. If they truly wanted to protect the party symbol, they could have easily submitted documents earlier, the education minister further claimed.
Kesarkar also said that nearly 4,600 fake affidavits, “submitted by the Thackeray camp”, have been found by police.
“If they are indulging in these practices on such a large scale, it means their intentions are not clean,” he claimed.
The Mumbai Police official on Sunday said they have registered an FIR against unidentified persons on charges of cheating and forgery after recovering more than 4,500 affidavits being prepared in support of the Thackeray-led Sena faction.
Kesarkar also claimed that Thackeray ignored the advice of Shinde and other hardcore workers to go to the masses and help widen the party base.
“He (Thackeray) remained at home. After Shinde’s rebellion, he has started meeting people, holding talks with party workers,” the minister said.