Kohima, Oct. 20: The Election Commission of India (ECI), in exercise of its powers under Article 324 of the constitution, has directed that no political party or candidate or any other organization or person should publish any advertisement in the print media on poll day and one-day prior to poll day unless they receive pre-certification from the MCMC committee at the state/ district level, as the case may be, for contents of the advertisement proposed to be published by the political parties, candidates etc.
The ECI has issued this notification having observed instances of offending and misleading nature published in print media in the past. ECI felt that such advertisements in the last stage of the election vitiate the entire election process. It, therefore, stated that the affected candidates and parties would not have any opportunity of providing clarification/ rebuttal in such cases.
ECI has issued this notification in order to ensure that such instances are not repeated and no untoward incident takes place because of any inflammatory, misleading or hate advertisements.
It further directed that in order to facilitate the process of pre-certification of the newspaper advertisements and as instructed above, MCMC at state/ district level be immediately alerted and activated in order to examine and pre-certify all such advertisements received from the political parties and candidates and others.
ECI also desired that the directives be brought to the notice of presidents of all political parties, contesting candidates and newspapers in the states and also give wide publicity to all media of mass communication for general information and strict compliance. The directions would come into force immediately, the report added.