NEW DELHI: With the first phase of Lok Sabha polling on 7 April, the Election Commission has banned the publication and dissemination of exit polls of any kind from that day to 12 May when the last phase of polling ends.
The Commission said the ban or "restriction" on exit polls will also be applicable for elections to Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh assemblies which are being held along with Lok Sabha polls.
The exit polls will be banned from 7 am on 7 April when polling in the first phase starts till 6.30 PM on 12 May when the polling in the ninth and last phase ends.
Using its powers under the Representation of the People Act, an EC notification said, "Conducting any exit poll and publishing or publicising by means of the print or electronic media or dissemination in any manner, whatsoever, the result of any exit poll....shall be prohibited."
The Commission has also banned the publication of results of any opinion polls, 48 hours before polling in respective areas under the existing law.
The poll panel had proposed that there should be a prohibition on publication and broadcast of the results of opinion polls starting from the date of notification of elections till the completion of the last phase of polls to Lok Sabha and state assemblies.