5[126A. Restriction on publication and dissemination of result of exit polls, etc.-
(1) No person shall conduct any exit poll and publish or publicise by means of the print or electronic media or disseminate in any other manner, whatsoever, the result of any exit poll during such period, as may be notified by the Election Commission in this regard.
(2) For the purposes of sub-section (1), the Election Commission shall, by a general order, notify the date and time having due regard to the following, namely:-
(a) in case of a general election, the period may commence from the beginning of the hours fixed for poll on the first day of poll and continue till half an hour after closing of the poll in all the States and Union territories;
(b) in case of a bye-election or a number of bye-elections held together, the period may commence from the beginning of the hours fixed for poll on and from the first day of poll and continue till half an hour after closing of the poll:
Provided that in case of a number of bye-elections held together on different days, the period may commence from the beginning of the hours fixed for poll on the first day of poll and continue till half an hour after closing of the last poll.
(3) Any person who contravenes the provisions of this section shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years or with fine or with both.
Explanation.-For the purposes of this section,-
(a) "exit poll" means an opinion survey respecting how electors have voted at an election or respecting how all the electors have performed with regard to the identification of a political party or candidate in an election;
(b) "electronic media" includes internet, radio and television including Internet Protocol Television, satellite, terrestrial or cable channels, mobile and such other media either owned by the Government or private person or by both;
(c) "print media" includes any newspaper, magazine or periodical, poster, placard, handbill or any other document;
(d) "dissemination" includes publication in any "print media" or broadcast or display on any electronic media.
1. Ins. by Act 1 of 1989, s. 13 (w.e.f. 15-3-1989).
2. Ins. by Act 40 of 1961, s. 24 (w.e.f. 20-9-1961).
3. Ins. by 72 of 2002, s. 5 (w.e.f. 24-8-2002).
4. Subs. by Act 21 of 1996, s. 10, for section 126 (w.e.f. 1-8-1996).
5. Ins. by Act 41 of 2009, s. 7 (w.e.f. 1-2-2010).