As all exit polls predicted a victory for the BJP-led NDA, the mood in the Amit Shah-led BJP’s office became more upbeat. Most of the staff were given a holiday, as they worked without a break for the last two months, but the excitement was palpable in and around the office. The tent for hosting party leaders and television cameras for D-day were almost ready. There will be partitions for the spokespersons to give live interviews for television channels.
Off The Air
NaMo TV, which used to screen promotional campaign content on Prime Minister Narendra Modi through the day, has gone off air from the various DTH platforms on which it was available. Launched in March-end, just before Modi’s first campaign rallies, the channel which became the centre of controversy has disappeared with the conclusion of polls. The BJP took nearly a week to claim ownership of the channel, which had bypassed the I&B Ministry’s permissions by running as a service platform across DTH networks in the country. A day after the exit polls, some in the BJP office jokingly asked what NaMo TV’s prediction was for the May 23 results.
The Lok Sabha secretariat was left red-faced after it was forced to withdraw portions of two bulletins — one on April 25 and one on May 7 — where it said that the term of the 16th Lok Sabha would end on May 17 on completion of five years. The convention is that the term of a Lok Sabha is over when a new one is elected. In a new bulletin issued last week, the secretariat advised MPs to “ignore” para 8076 and 8079 published on those two dates, which said that the term would end on May 17.