EC revives call to ban opinion polls, seeks a change in law

FP

In 1999, the EC had to withdraw the guidelines issued by it on January 20, 1998, regulating "publication and dissemination of results of opinion polls/exit polls" after a petition challenging the guidelines was filed in the Supreme Court.

In 2004, the EC first sought a complete ban on exit and opinion polls during elections, as part of 22 poll reforms recommended by it to the Union government.

However, the NDA government's plan to take the ordinance route to ban exit and opinion polls as sought by the EC had come a cropper after then Attorney General Soli Sorabjee objected to it. In his legal opinion, Sorabjee told the government that the ordinance would be violative of the right to freedom of speech and expression, but said that reasonable restrictions could be imposed.

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