In a major boost to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, the Election Commission on Monday recognised the faction headed by him as the Samajwadi Party and allotted the reserved symbol 'Bicycle' to it for contesting the coming Assembly elections.

The group led by Akhilesh Yadav is the Samajwadi Party and is entitled to use its name and reserved symbol Bicycle, the three-member Election Commission headed by Nasim Zaidi said in its order. The verdict comes a day ahead of the start of the filing of nominations in the seven-phased polls in the state beginning on February 11.

Source: b'A representational image | Source: AFP'

The order, dealing a major blow to Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav, came after the EC heard the two sides on Friday. It also came within a fortnight of Akhilesh being anointed the national president of the party.

"The commission hereby answers the issue by holding that the groups led by Akhilesh Yadav is the Samajwadi Party and is entitled to use its name and its reserved symbol Bicycle for the purposes of the Election symbols (Reservation and allotment) order 1968," the EC order said.

Akhilesh faction has welcomed the EC order and has called it fair decision. Ramgopal Yadav said that he hopes a grand alliance will be formed to fight elections in Uttar Pradesh.

(Feature image source: PTI)