Sasikala faction Caught Using AIADMK's Two-Leaf Symbol, Gets Warning

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Sasikala faction Caught Using AIADMK's Two-Leaf Symbol, Gets Warning

Both O Panneerselvam and VK Sasikala factions had staked claim to the poll symbol of AIADMK.

New Delhi:  Days after freezing the two-leaf symbol of AIADMK, the Election Commission today pulled up the party's VK Sasikala faction, which has apparently been using the symbol in the run-up to the by-election in Chennai's RK Nagar constituency. The Commission directed it to remove it from its website and all social media accounts, saying the use was a violation of the poll code. The Sasikala faction, which calls itself AIADMK (Amma) since the poll commission asked it to tweak its name, has been given time till Thursday to explain why it had violated the freeze on the poll symbol.

The Election Commission said it has found that the AIADMK (Amma) faction was still using the original election symbol of the AIADMK which amounted to publication of "false information" and is an election offence.

"The Commission directs that the said depiction of the symbol 'two leaves' in print, electronic or digital media such as your website/facebook/twitter or any social media or in any other manner be stopped forthwith," the Election Commission said.

The two AIADMK factions were allotted new symbols and names after the poll panel barred them from using the undivided party's election symbol in March. While the Sasikala camp is contesting on the 'hat' symbol as AIADMK (Amma), the O Panneerselvam camp is using the 'electric pole' symbol and has gone to the hustings as AIADMK (Puratchithalaivi Amma).

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Mr Panneerselvam  -- a Jayalalithaa loyalist who became the Chief Minister after her death and had to step down to make way for Ms Sasikala -- had claimed that they were original AIADMK.
His faction contended that they should be allowed to use the two-leaf symbol in the campaign for RK Nagar - the seat which fell vacant after Jayalalithaa's death.

Mr Panneerselvam, who was expelled after his rebellion, had also argued that that as an interim General Secretary, Ms Sasikala had no power to expel anyone. He had asked the Election Commission to declare her election to the post as illegal.

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