Maya de­fends memo­ri­als, parks

Hindustan Times (Amritsar) - - News - Man­ish Chan­dra Pandey man­[email protected]

LUCKNOW: Bahu­jan Sa­maj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati on Satur­day de­fended her de­ci­sion to build stat­ues of Dalit icons and other memo­ri­als in Ut­tar Pradesh dur­ing the years when she was in power, a day after the Supreme Court ob­served that she may have to repay the pub­lic money spent on such in­stal­la­tions, in­clud­ing stat­ues of the party sym­bol, the ele­phant.

Re­act­ing to me­dia cov­er­age of the Supreme Court’s oral ob­ser­va­tions, Mayawati ad­vised the “BJP and the me­dia” against “kite fly­ing” in a se­ries of posts on Twit­ter, which she joined last month. “Mar­vel­lous sthals/ memo­ri­als/parks etc. built to hon­our hith­erto ig­nored great saints, gu­rus and great men born in de­prived and op­pressed dalit and OBCs are new grand iden­tity and tourist at­trac­tion of Ut­tar Pradesh which gives reg­u­lar in­come to gov­ern­ment,” she said in four tweets, two in Hindi and two in English.

The BSP chief posted in one of them: “Hum­ble re­quest to me­dia please don’t dis­tort oral ob­ser­va­tion of the Hon’ble Court. Sure to get jus­tice in this mat­ter also. Me­dia and BJP lead­ers please stop kite fly­ing.”

On Fri­day, a bench led by Chief Jus­tice of In­dia Ran­jan Go­goi said in an oral ob­ser­va­tion dur­ing a hear­ing on a 10-year-old pub­lic in­ter­est lit­i­ga­tion that it was of the “ten­ta­tive view” that the for­mer UP chief min­is­ter should pay out of her pocket for the stat­ues of her­self and the ele­phant erected in UP dur­ing her ten­ure. The court fixed April 2 to hear the mat­ter for its fi­nal dis­posal.

The re­marks come at a time when Mayawati is pre­par­ing for the gen­eral election in Ut­tar Pradesh, which BSP will fight in an al­liance with the Sa­ma­jwadi Party (SP).

■ The SC on Fri­day ob­served that Mayawati may have to repay the pub­lic money spent on stat­ues of the BSP sym­bol — ele­phant. HT FILE

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