New Delhi, May 9 UNI | 3 months ago

In a flip flop, the Election Commission today clarified that exit polls could be telecast on May 12, when the last phase of Lok Sabha polls conclude.

Election commissioner H S Brahma had earlier stated that exit polls cannot be telecast till May 16.

Brahma, in an interaction with mediapersons earlier, said exit polls cannot be telecast till May 16, the date when counting will be held.

The Election Commission later clarified that the exit polls can be telecast on May 12 after 1830 hrs.

'Exit poll is prohibited till half an hour after closing of the poll on May 12 (the last day of the nine-phased polling),' the Election Commission said in a statement.

'In a multi-phased election, the ban begins on the hour the poll is fixed and ends half an hour after the poll ends in the last phase,' said Dhirendra Ojha, Director in the EC.

EC's clarification came soon after Election Commissioner Brahma said the exit polls cannot be telecast before May 16.

Talking to mediapersons during an interaction, Mr Brahma said, ''you are not supposed to conduct exit polls before May 16, the counting day. We will not allow you to open your mouth before May 16 evening.'

''On the result day evening you can openly telecast the exit polls. Exit poll is only after counting. What is the hurry? Hardly, there are 150 hours (between May 12 and May 16),'' he added.

Asked why the exit polls cannot be telecast before May 16, Mr Brahma argued that there could be re-poll in several places.

'What is the guarantee that you will have no re-polling or countermanding of polls on May 13 or May 14,' he said.

(Posted on 10-05-2014)