Sharad Pawar vs Ajit Pawar: SC refuses to modify its order on ‘clock’ symbol

New Delhi, April 4 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Thursday refused to modify its order which had asked the Ajit Pawar faction to make newspaper publications clarifying that the allocation of the “clock” symbol is sub-judice.

Observing that the public advertisements in newspapers were tucked in corners, a bench presided over by Justice Surya Kant asked the Ajit Pawar side to issue public notices afresh with more prominent space.

It also asked senior advocate Mukul Rohtagi, appearing for Ajit Pawar's side, to sensitise NCP workers, office bearers and candidates to not defy the top court’s direction.

Further, it clarified that the Nationalist Congress Party–Sharadchandra Pawar (NCP-SP) — having the ‘Man Blowing Turha’ symbol — will also follow court orders and not use the “clock” symbol.

The Bench, also comprising Justice KV Viswanathan, was hearing an application filed by the Sharad Pawar faction alleging non-compliance with the March 19 interim direction.

In that order, the top court had asked the Ajit Pawar-led party – which has been recognised by the Election Commission as the “real” NCP – to issue a public notice in English, Marathi, and Hindi editions, stating that the usage of the 'clock' symbol reserved for NCP is subject to the final outcome of proceedings pending before the Supreme Court.

“Such a declaration shall be incorporated in every pamphlet, advertisement, audio, or video clip to be issued on behalf of the respondents (Ajit Pawar-led party),” the SC order had said.

On Wednesday, senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for veteran leader Sharad Pawar, mentioned the issue of non-compliance saying that the Ajit Pawar-led party did not publish the disclaimer in any newspaper in terms of the court’s direction but has moved an application seeking relaxation of the March 19 order.

At this, Justice Kant-led Bench directed the listing of the matter on the very next day and asked Ajit Pawar’s counsel to obtain instructions in the matter and sought details of the number of disclaimers published in the newspapers.

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