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THE ELECTION Commission On Wednesday cautioned the media that it should not broadcast or publish any opinion poll till the Lok Sabha polls end on May 12.

Referring to an opinion poll broadcast by a TV channel on April 14, the EC said it included results of 111 Lok Sabha constituencies where polling had already taken place which in effect becomes dissemination of the result of exit polls in the said seats.

According to the EC, this violated Section 126A of Representation of the People Act that prohibits publication and dissemination of exit polls.

According to the EC, "The period may commence from the beginning of the hours fixed for poll on the first day of poll and continues till half an hour after closing of the polling in all the states and union territories."In order to maintain a level playing field and to ensure free and fair elections, the EC advised all print and electronic media not to resort to such broadcast or publish such information.

Such practice, which for all practical purposes mean publication of exit polls while claiming that the same is only an opinion poll, the EC said in its communication to heads of all media organisations.

The Election Commission had this month banned the publication and dissemination of exit polls of any kind from April 7, the first phase of Lok Sabha elections, till May 12 when the last phase of the polling ends.

The exit polls were banned from 7 am on April 7 when polling in the first phase started till 6.30 pm on May 12 when the polling in the ninth and last phase ends.

The EC had also banned the publication of results of any opinion polls 48 hours before polling in respective areas.

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Publication:Mail Today (New Delhi, India)
Date:Apr 17, 2014
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