As the Mahabharata for ballots begins on Monday, the BJP – considered as the front-runner by various opinion polls –would get into the battlefield with the handicap of not able to make its manifesto public in time.
BJP's manifesto, slated to be released at 9am on Monday, coinciding with the first polling day of the nine phased elections – is expected to remain hidden from vast multitude of 13.44 crore electors
that are going to cast their ballot in the first four phases -- April 7, 9, 10 and 12 across 20 odd states and UTs.
The reason! According to the Election Commission, the manifesto cannot be telecast by the electronic media as it would be a violation of section 126 (1) (b) of the Representation of People's Act.
The relevant section says "No person shall display to the public any election matter by means of cinematograph, television or other similar apparatus... in any polling area during the period of 48 hours.