New Delhi: The Delhi high court upheld the order of the Election Commission allotting the AIADMK’s two-leaves symbol to Edappadi K Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam faction on Thursday.

While dismissing the appeal by leaders of the other faction, TTV Dhinakaran and V Sasikala, the court observed that there was no infirmity with the EC order.

The judgment was delivered by a Division Bench of Justices GS Sistani and Sangita Dhindra Sehgal. The verdict was reserved by the Bench on February 8.

Also watch: AIADMK party members celebrate Delhi HC order on two leaves symbol

There was a rift in the AIADMK after the demise of its chief J Jayalalithaa on December 5, 2016. The party split into two factions, one of which was led by Edappadi K Palaniswami and the other by TTV Dhinakaran, Sasikala and chief minister O Panneerselvam.

O Panneerselvam later went on to join hands with Palaniswami in order to oust Sasikala and TTV Dhinakaran.

On November 23, 2017, the Election Commission allotted the two-leaves symbol to the EPS-OPS faction on the grounds that they had majoritarian support from the legislative and organizational wings.

The allotment sent TTV Dhinakaran and Sasikala to the steps of the Delhi high court in order to assail the EC order.

Sasikala and Dhinakaran had argued that the EC order allotting the two-leaves symbol to the EPS-OPS camp and thereby recognising that faction as the successor of the AIADMK post the death of Jayalalithaa, could not be sustained in law. 

They also argued that the EC should have applied the “aim & object test” to determine the rightful successor of the AIADMK party, and not the numerical majority test.

EPS-OPS, as well as the Election Commission, defended the order on allotment of the two leaves symbol on the ground that their faction held a clear majority.

The Sasikala-Dhinakaran faction was represented by senior advocates Kapil Sibal, Abhishek Manu Singhvi, and Meenakshi Arora.

The EPS-OPS faction was represented by senior advocates Mukul Rohatgi and CS Vaidyanathan.