2019 elections: SC refuses to allot cooker symbol for AMMK

Chennai: The Supreme Court today said it cannot allot the cooker symbol for the Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK).

The case came up before the court after the Election Commission (EC) informed it that  it would not allot the cooker symbol for the upcoming election for the fledgling party.

The party came into being after the AIADMK sacked its general secretary V K Sasikala and her nephew T T V Dhinakaran. Dhinakaran then floated the AMMK under the leadership of Sasikala and assumed the post of deputy general secretary.

TTV, as Dhinkaran is generally known, had contested the R K Nagar by-election after the death of its representative chief minister J Jayalalithaa and won it by a wide margin – on the cooker symbol. He then sought from the EC the same symbol to contest the 2019 general elections and the by-elections being conducted to the Tamilnadu Assembly.

Dhinakaran has already filed a case in court, staking claim to the two leaves symbol of the AIADMK, which was rejected by the Delhi High Court recently. Today, his counsel Kapil Sibal argued in court that they were claiming the cooker symbol as an interim measure while the order on the two leaves symbol is in pendency.

When the bench of Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi wanted to know how an unregistered party can claim a permanent symbol, the AMMK counsel agreed to get the party registered. But the EC said even if the party was registered today, it would take 30 days to give effect the allotment of the symbol.

In such a case, Dhinakaran urged to grant a common symbol for the party.

The EC said it would treat all the contestants of the party only as Independent candidates and allot them individual symbols and not a common symbol.

It is to be noted that today is the last day to file nominations for the 18 April elections to the Lok Sabha as well as the Assembly.

NT Bureau