The Election Commission today concluded hearing the AIADMK symbol case and reserved the order which is likely to be delivered in the next few days. At the seventh hearing today, the rival E K Palaniswami-O Panneerselvam and the Sasikala Natarajan factions concluded their arguments. The Sasikala faction wanted to counter certain points raised by the Palaniswami-Panneerselvam faction, but was asked by EC to give it in writing by early next week. Counsel for the Palaniswami-Panneerselvam faction and former attorney general Mukul Rohatgi said the hearings were concluded today and the order will be delivered soon. A senior functionary said the order has been reserved and would be made public in the next few days. Sasikala faction counsel Raja Senthoor Pandian claimed that the Palaniswami-Panneerselvam side took up most of the time today, leaving little time for them to respond. "But we will place our arguments in writing and say on record that we were denied an opportunity to verbally place our stand," Pandian told reporters. Initially two factions led by Panneerselvam and Sasikala had staked claim to the 'two leaves' symbol.
The poll panel had frozen it, pending decision on their pleas. Later, a large group of legislators led by Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami revolted against Sasikala, who is in jail in a graft case, and announced merger with Panneerselvam faction. Resolutions ousting Sasikala as interim general secretary and her nephew Dhinakaran as her deputy were also adopted at the party's general council meeting held on September 12. On September 14, representatives of Dhinakaran had approached the EC urging it to declare as invalid the general council meeting, citing a high court order that said any decision taken at the impugned meeting will be subject to the final outcome in the appeal.
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