SC asks EC to decide if elephant statues in UP are poll symbols

EC given three months to decide the issue

PTI | February 22, 2010


Elephant statues at Mayawati`s 13 A Mall Avenue house in Lucknow
Elephant statues at Mayawati`s 13 A Mall Avenue house in Lucknow

The supreme court on Monday asked the election commission to decide whether the installation of statues of elephants at the cost of the state exchequer by the Mayawati government in Lucknow and Noida amounts to the installation of election symbol of the party.

A bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan granted three months to the election commission to decide the issue.

The bench was hearing a PIL filed by two advocates Ravi Kant and Sukumar, who have accused the UP government of misusing public money for the installation of statues of the dalit leaders including Mayawati and party symbol, elephant at various places in the state.

Kant had submitted before the bench that the information gathered through an RTI disclosed that 60 statues of elephants were being installed by Uttar Pradesh government at a cost of Rs 52.20 crore at public places by utilising state funds.

The particular issue of election symbol was referred to the rlection commission as the petitioners have also made a representation before the commission.

The PIL had sought a direction to restrain Mayawati from installing her statues and those of elephants at public places with public funds and demanded a CBI probe into the misuse of state exchequer.

The advocate had claimed the total money used by Mayawati from the state budget for 2008-09 and 2009-10 for such projects was to the tune of Rs 2,000 crore.
 

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