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Updated February 6th, 2024 at 20:45 IST

Major Setback For Sharad Pawar, Election Commission Recognises Ajit Pawar-Faction As NCP

The Ajit Pawar faction has been recognised as the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and has been awarded the party symbol.

Abhishek Tiwari
Ajit Pawar
Ajit Pawar (left), Sharad Pawar (right). | Image:PTI
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Mumbai: The Election Commission of India (ECI) has recognised the Ajit Pawar faction as the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and has awarded the party symbol of an analogue alarm clock to the faction. The latest decision by the ECI has ended the battle between the two factions over the party name and symbol giving the Sharad Pawar-faction a massive jolt.  

After the decision, the state party of Maharashtra and Nagaland now officially belongs to the Ajit Pawar-faction, attaining the status of ruling party in Maharashtra and at the Centre. This has also brought an end to the 7 month long battle, which started in the month of July last year. 

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Ajit Pawar had filed petition on July 1st, 2023

The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), a recognised State Party in the states of Maharashtra and Nagaland, having the reserved symbol ‘Clock’ came into existence on July 5, 1999. The poll performance by the NCP attained it a status of national party on January 10, 2000. However, the Commission withdrew the national status of the party on April 10, 2023.

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Last year, political differences between Ajit Pawar and Sharad Pawar led to a divide in the NCP, leading to the formation of the Ajit Pawar-faction and the Sharad Pawar faction of the NCP, Ajit Pawar along with his supporters joined the NDA government in Maharashtra.

The divide in the party triggered a big political rift between the two factions, following which the Ajit Pawar-faction stake claim for the party name and symbol. The faction on July 1, 2023 filed a petition seeking the party name and symbol to them.

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The ECI in the order stated, “On July 1, 2023, the Commission received a petition under paragraph 15 of the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order 1968, by Ajit Pawar. In his petition, he submitted that Sharad Pawar, who claims to be the national president, is running the party in total disregard of the Constitution and rules of the same. 

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Pawar claimed that the majority in the party lies with him.

Now, after around 7 months, the election commission has ruled in favour of Ajit Pawar handing him the party’s name and symbol. 

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Expressing his pleasure over the decision, NCP chief and Maharashtra Deputy CM Ajit Pawar stated, “The Election Commission has ruled in our favour after listening to the arguments of our lawyers. We welcome this humbly.”

NCP leader Praful Patel said, “We welcome the ruling of the election commission. We live in a democracy and any decision can be challenged. Maybe attempts will be made to challenge this at the Supreme Court or the high court. All I would like to say is that the decision we made was correct and through EC, our decision has been proven correct."



 

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Published February 6th, 2024 at 19:44 IST

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