EC bars media from predicting poll results till May 19

The Election Commission on Monday issued an advisory to media to refrain from telecasting or publishing any opinion polls or exit polls from the start of polling on in the first phase of April 11 till the end of polling in the last phase on May 19.

It also barred any prediction of results of elections by astrologers, tarot readers or political analysts during this period.

“The Election Commission of India has issued an advisory to all the media (electronic and print) to refrain from telecasting/publishing programmes which, in any way, whatsoever predict the results of the elections during the prohibited period under (Section) 126A to ensure free, fair and transparent election,” the advisory said.

It added that prediction of results of elections in any form during the prohibited period was violation of the spirit of the Representation of Peoples Act’s Section 126A, which aims to prevent the electors of constituencies still going to polls from being influenced in their voting by such predictions about the prospects of various political parties.

“All the media (electronic and print) are advised not to publish/publicise any such article/programme related to the dissemination of results, during the prohibited period i.e. between 7 am on April 11 (Thursday) and upto 6.30 pm on May 19 (Sunday) in the current General Elections to the LokSabha and state legislative assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim and the assembly bye-elections being held in several states,” the poll panel said.