UP govt starts to veil Maya, her elephants

EC`s decision to cover the statues of CM Mayawati and those of its poll symbol elephant was termed as one-sided and against natural justice by BSP.

Zeenews Bureau

Lucknow: A day after the Election Commission (EC) ordered covering of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati and Bahujan Samaj Party poll symbol, the elephant, state administration Sunday started putting covers on them.

The statues and symbols will remain covered till assembly polls in the state are over.

Chief Election Commissioner SY Quraishi on Saturday had said, “The Commission has decided that statues of the CM and elephants will be draped.”

Justifying its decision of covering the statues in Lucknow, Noida and other places the CEC said, "The idea is that no one should get political mileage. During elections even photos of leaders put up in offices are removed," the CEC said.

A petitioner had approached the poll panel to seek "appropriate steps" to ensure a "level playing field" in the elections.

Several political parties had also demanded that the Election Commission should order removal of statues of elephants.

Strongly objecting to EC’s move, BSP on Saturday termed as "one-sided and against natural justice" the Election Commission`s decision to cover the statues of Chief Minister Mayawati and those of its poll symbol elephant.

"The Election Commission today directed covering the statues accepting the one sided memorandum of anti-Dalit parties like Congress, BJP and SP and it is also in violation of article 14 of the Constitution", BSP general secretary Satish C Misra told newspersons here.

The Commission did not give a chance to the party to hear its viewpoint before passing such an order, he said adding "this would have a bearing on the result of the coming elections on the fate of these parties as the matter would now be in the court of the people".

The BSP leader said the party had hoped that the EC would take a decision in the process of conducting free and fair elections but that hope "received a jolt today".