An Election Commission notification last month mentions a number of symbols which have found no takers amongst the multitude of political parties in India. The unwanted amongst the list of prescribed symbols include the almirah, the air conditioner, a batsman, chappals(slippers), doli ( or palanquin), a harmonium, ice cream, a woman's purse, a mixie, a nail cutter, and the nib of a pen.
The notification issued on March 10, 2014 said that apart from the six national parties including Bahujan Samaj Party, Bharatiya Janata Party, Communist Party of India, Communist Party of India (Marxist), Indian National Congress and Nationalist Congress Party that have symbols including elephant; lotus; ears of corn and sickle; hammer, sickle and star; hand; and clock, there are more than 50 regional parties. Their symbols range from the ubiquitous such as the lion and the rooster, as well as several other party symbols like maize, a lock and key, a bungalow, a pair of spectacles, a banana and a spade & stoker.
Further, there are 1593 registered unrecognised parties, according to information available with the Election Commission. These include Aapka Hamara Party headquartered in Jharkhand, Aarakshan Virodhi Party of Haryana, Amra Bangalee Party of West Bengal, Best Class Party of Uttar Pradesh, Social Justice Party of Tamil Nadu and Total Vikas Party among others.
Among the election symbols already allotted, some are not valid in certain regions. For instance, the Bahujan Samaj Party's election symbol Elephant is valid in all states and union territories except in the State of Assam, where its candidates will have to choose a symbol from out of the list of free symbols specified by the Commission.