The Commission wants to settle the matter before January 17 when the process of nomination begins for the first phase of polling in Uttar Pradesh to be held on February 11, provided the two sides proceed accordingly.
Notices are being sent to both factions for the hearing.
While the Akhilesh camp has submitted affidavits signed by party MPs, MLAs, MLCs and delegates supporting him, the other side has maintained that as per the party’s constitution, Mr. Mulayam is still the party chief.
The Mulayam-led faction has also claimed that the affidavits submitted by the Akhilesh camp were forged and that the EC should get them verified before proceeding.
On Monday, the Akhilesh camp urged the Commission to decide on the matter at the earliest as the nomination process will begin on Tuesday next.
The ‘cycle’ symbol faces the threat of being frozen before the seven-phase Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls if the Election Commission is not able to decide which of the two factions of the party commands majority in the organisation.
The side that has the support of majority (50 per cent plus 1) of MPs, MLAs, MLCs and delegates will gain an upper hand in the fight to control the party founded 25 years ago.
Candidates from the Mulayam and Akhilesh camps cannot fight election on ‘cycle’ symbol at the same time, therefore, the EC will have to take a call on the issue before the filing of nominations begins.