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Lok Sabha elections 2019: Congress-NCP ally in Maha loses whistle symbol

The decision to freeze the symbol was taken by Prashant Narnaware, returning officer and Palghar district collector, late Friday night.

lok sabha elections Updated: Apr 14, 2019 00:53 IST
Ram Parmar
Ram Parmar
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Lok Sabha election,2019 election
BVA candidate Baliram Jadhav was allotted the ‘autorickshaw’ symbol. (HT File)

The Bahujan Vikas Aghadhi (BVA), an ally of the Congress-NCP which is contesting the Palghar seat, suffered a setback on Saturday as election authorities froze the whistle symbol the party has been using for a decade, following a dispute.

The decision to freeze the symbol was taken by Prashant Narnaware, returning officer and Palghar district collector, late Friday night. BVA candidate Baliram Jadhav was allotted the ‘autorickshaw’ symbol.

The whistle symbol had been claimed by the Bahujan Maha Party (BMP), an outfit that had been in alliance with BVA.

“Though we have received a minor setback, we will not waste time. We will not be appealing before the high court for getting back our traditional symbol,”said Ajeev Patil, convenor, BVA. There is a direct fight between Shiv Sena candidate Rajendra Gavit and BVA’s Jadhav in Palghar constituency. Gavit had won the seat on a BJP ticket last year in a by-election, defeating the Sena candidate. He recently joined the Sena.

The BVA had approached the high court on Friday for granting the whistle symbol but the HC directed it to appeal before the district election authorities.

Sena insiders said party leaders Eknath Shinde, Ravindra Phatak and party secretary Milind Narvekar had been in touch with the BMP. PWD minister Shinde and Ravindra Phatak, MLC of Sena, had met Dr Narnaware late on Friday. Rajesh Shah, Sena’s Palghar district president, said the meeting was to seek permissions for campaigning. Shah refused to comment on the visit’s timing and if the official machinery was pressurised over the symbol issue.

First Published: Apr 14, 2019 00:53 IST