Supreme Court declines to stop Mayawati’s statue spree (Lead)

July 10th, 2009 - 10:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Bahujan Samaj Party New Delhi, July 10 (IANS) The Supreme Court Friday refused to restrain the Uttar Pradesh government from installing statues of its Chief Minister Mayawati, her political mentor late Kanshi Ram and the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party’s (BSP) election symbol - the elephant.
A bench of Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan and Justice P. Sathasivam said it would not intervene into the matter.

“How can we intervene into the matter, when it has been approved by the the cabinet?” posed the bench, refusing to entertain a plea to restrain the Uttar Pradesh government from installing statues all over the state.

“We can intervene only if there are allegations of corruption or misappropriation of funds,” said the bench, refusing to pass any prompt order on an interim application by Delhi-based advocate Ravi Kant, who wanted the court to at least stop the state government from installing statues in a Noida park on the Yamuna riverbed.

Ravi Kant made an interim plea pending the outcome on another lawsuit accusing waste of public money by the state government in installing statues largely of Mayawati and her political mentor Kanshi Ram.

Quoting information, procured under Right to Information Act, Ravi Kant told the court that installation of statues in Noida park alone is going to cost over Rs.1.87 billion.

He said the central plaza within the Noida park is to have an 18 feet tall statue of Mayawati, while there are plans also for statues of Kanshi Ram and B.R. Ambedkar.

Ravi Kant contended that the state government is set to spend over Rs.20 billion from the state exchequer to install these statues to further her partisan interests.

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