The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to direct Election Commission (EC) to issue 'pressure cooker' as a common symbol to TTV Dhinakaran faction of AIADMK for the upcoming Lok Sabha and Assembly by-polls in Tamil Nadu.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi instead asked the EC to give them a common election symbol from among the free symbols available.
The apex court has also made it clear that its order of asking the poll panel to consider granting common election symbol would not amount to granting recognition to his outfit as a political group.
It further stated that if any candidate is elected, he or she will be treated as an Independent.
The apex court said its order to grant common free symbol to the list of 59 candidates was passed to "ensure level-playing field and free and fair elections".
During the hearing, the counsel appearing for the Election Commission told the bench, also comprising Justice Deepak Gupta and Justice Sanjiv Khanna, that a common symbol of 'pressure cooker' cannot be given to the Dhinakaran-led faction as they were not a registered political party.
The Supreme Court also asked Dhinakaran's counsels why they did not register the faction as a party with the EC.
"You should have applied for registration of the party. You missed it," CJI Ranjan Gogoi told advocates Kapil Sibal and AM Singhvi who were appearing for Dhinakaran.
EC also informed the court that they could have got the symbol had they approached the Commission in time.
TTV Dhinakaran faction, therefore, has no exclusive access to 'pressure cooker' symbol as they did not apply under Section 29A of Representation of People Act for registration of the party.