New Delhi: Cracking the whip, the Election Commission on Monday ordered registration of cases against the management and Editor-in-Chief of Hindi daily Dainik Jagran for publishing an exit poll on the first phase of Uttar Pradesh assembly elections.
The EC also ordered an FIR against the management of Resource Development International (RDI) — the company that conducted the exit poll — for violating an EC order that bars publication/broadcast of exit polls till the voting is over in poll-bound states of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa, Manipur and Uttarakhand.
The poll panel has directed the District Election Officers of the state’s districts covered under the first phase of elections on February 11 and Lucknow to immediately register cases against the managements of RDI and Dainik Jagran as well as the newspaper’s Editor-in-Chief under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) read with Sections 126-A and 126-B of the Representation of People Act.
“It has been brought to the Commission’s notice that Dainik Jagran newspaper has published the result of an exit poll conducted by a company by the name of Resource Development International (I) Pvt Ltd on the first phase of elections in UP on their website. The reported violation by conducting the exit poll and disseminating its result amounts to offence under Sections 126-A and 126-B of Representation of People Act, 1951, as well as offence under Section 188 of the IPC. The offence also amounts to disobedience to an order duly promulgated by the commission,” the EC said in a letter.
“The commission has decided to take stringent action against the perpetrators of this serious violation of the Act to uphold the law to ensure the smooth conduct of free and fair elections. The commission has directed that the District Election Officers of each of the districts covered under the first phase of polls and Lucknow shall immediately file FIRs against the Managing Director and/or such other authorities of RDI and Dainik Jagran including the Managing Editor/Editor-in-Chief/Editor/Chief Editor of the newspaper under Section 188 of the IPC read with Sections 126-A and 126-B of the Representation of People Act, 1951,” it said.IANS