New Delhi, Oct 11 (UNI) In order to maintain a free and fair election process, the Election Commission on Thursday announced the guidelines for the media during the assembly polls in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Telangana and Mizoram.
In a press release the Commission said that section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 prohibits displaying any election matter in television or similar apparatus, during the period of 48 hours before the hour fixed for conclusion of poll in a constituency.
The Commission also said Section 126 A of the Representation of People Act prohibits conduct of Exit polls and dissemination of their results during the period reckoned from the commencement of polls in first Phase and half an hour after the close of poll in the last phase in all the states.
The Commission has been announced the poll schedule for five states, and Chhattisgarh will go to polls in two phases on November 12 and 20, Madhya Pradesh and Mizoram on November 28 and Rajasthan and Telangana would go for the polls on November 7.
“TV and Radio channels and cable networks should ensure that the contents of the programme telecast, broadcast, displayed by them during the period of 48 hours referred to in section 126 do not contain any material, including views, appeals by panelists, participants” and added that that may be construed as promoting, prejudicing the prospect of any particular party or candidates or influencing, affecting the result of the election.
The poll body said all print media is also drawn to the guidelines issued by Press Council of India during the election time such as give objective reports about election and the candidates.
“The news papers are not expected to indulge in unhealthy election campaigns, exaggerated reports about any candidate, party or incident during the elections”, the Commission said.