JD(U) can't use arrow symbol in J'khand, Maha polls: EC

JD(U), Shiv Sena and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha party symbols.

The Election Commission has barred Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's Janata Dal (United) from using “arrow” as its symbol to contest the forthcoming state assembly polls in Jharkhand and Maharashtra.

The EC recently concluded that the JD(U)'s “arrow” symbol would be confused by the voters with “bow and arrow”, the symbol allotted to Shiv Sena and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha in the two states.

The JD(U) is recognised as a “state party” in Bihar and Arunachal Pradesh. The party shares power with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Bihar. It also supports the BJP government in Arunachal Pradesh. The Jharkhand Mukti Morcha is recognised as a “state party” in Jharkhand. So is Shiv Sena in Maharashtra.

The state assembly elections in Maharashtra and Jharkhand are likely to be held later this year.

The JMM had on June 24 wrote to the EC expressing concern that allotment of the “arrow” to the candidates of the JD(U) in Jharkhand would create confusion in the minds of electors in the State of Jharkhand where a majority of voters had a rural base with a low level of literacy.

The symbol “arrow” had very close similarity in design to the reserved symbol “bow and arrow”, the JMM argued.

The EC had earlier this year barred the JMM and the Shiv Sena from contesting Lok Sabha elections in Bihar with the “bow and arrow” to ensure that the voters do not get confused with the “arrow” symbol of the JD(U).

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