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Mayawati memorials cost Rs 5,919 cr, says LDA

Author: Lalmani Verma
Publication: The Indian Express
Date: May 21, 2012
URL: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/mayawati-memorials-cost-rs-5-919-cr-says-lda/951755/0

How much money did the Mayawati government spend on construction of memorials and parks? Mayawati has denied Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav’s allegation of financial irregularities to the tune of Rs 40,000 crore, and stated that only 1 per cent of the budget was spent on parks and memorials but, interestingly, she has been evasive about the actual expenditure.

However, according to a report compiled by the Lucknow Development Authority (LDA), a total of Rs 5,919 crore was spent on the construction of these structures at nine different locations in Lucknow, Noida and Greater Noida. The figure does not include the cost of land, sources said. Also, 5,634 employees are deployed for the maintenance of these parks and memorials.

The LDA had remained tight-lipped on queries about the constructions during the Mayawati regime, but prepared this report after the change of government. Sources said the report had been made by a committee constituted by the BSP government under top LDA officials for management, security and maintenance of these memorials, museums and parks.

According to the report, the government spent Rs 1,362 crore on the construction of Bhimrao Ambedkar Samajik Parivartan Sthal in Gomti Nagar. The memorial is spread over 38 hectares and 893 employees have been deployed to take care of its structures, including the main memorial building, Pratibimb Sthal, Drishya Sthal, the elephant gallery, Samajik Parivartan Gallery and Samajik Parivartan Sangrahalaya.

The government spent Rs 750 crore on the development of two parks and other structures outside Ambekdar Samajik Parivartan Sthal in Gomti Nagar. These structures include Ambedkar Samajik Parivartan Prateelk Sthal, Ambedkar Vihar, Ambedkar Gomti Vihar Khand-1 and 2 and two administrative blocks with a cafeteria. All these structures are spread over 32 hectares and 962 employees are deployed for maintenance work.

The report said Rs 1,075 crore was spent on construction of Kanshiram Green (Eco) Garden, which is spread over 73 hectares. The old jail campus was demolished to get the land cleared for the garden. As many as 1,261 employees are deployed there.

On the nearby Kanshiram Smarak Sthal on VIP Road, which is spread over 18 hectares, the government spent Rs 727 crore and 631 employees maintain the memorial. Along with the main memorial building, it also has an elephant gallery of 30 sandstone statues.

The Buddha Vihar Shanti Upwan along VIP Road, and opposite the Kanshiram Smarak Sthal, has been developed on 10.81 hectares at a cost of Rs 458 crore. Besides statues of Mayawati, Kanshiram and Gautam Buddha, it has a library on Buddhism. A total of 653 employees maintain the Upwan. An amount of Rs 655 crore was spent on the development of Ramabai Ambedkar Rally Sthal and rain basera with a parking lot near Shaheed Path on Bijnor Road. No rally has been organised at this place for more than one year but 960 employees are deployed for maintenance work.

The report said that the Dalit Prerna Sthal in Noida, which is spread over 35 hectares, has been constructed at a cost of Rs 750 crore and 187 employees maintain its structures.

Mayawati also got two parks constructed in her village Badalpur in Greater Noida — Ambedkar Park and Gautam Buddha Park. Spread over 10 hectares, the Ambedkar Park was constructed at a cost of Rs 96 crore. Gautam Buddha Park was developed on 4 hectares at the cost of Rs 46 crore. As many as 87 employees maintain these parks.
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