Saturday, June 23, 2012

Power blow dims Maya memorials’ glow across UP

Tariq Khan, Hindustan Times
Lucknow, June 23, 2012
Former chief minister Mayawati’s memorials for Dalit icons across UP will now be a pale shadow of their former radiance, at least till the power situation improves in the state.
After a blackout at the memorials — some of which have Mayawati’s statues — triggered a protest from the BSP in the assembly on June 18, the SP government restored power, but partially. Officials in charge of the memorials built by the erstwhile BSP government have now been forced to devise a differential lighting arrangement to save power and bring down the monthly bills from an estimated Rs 20-25 lakh per month.
“Under the new system, for every lamp or any other light fixture that will be lit, the two next to it in the row will remain switched off,” said an official on the maintenance and management committee of the memorials.
This pattern would be followed at all the memorials — Ambedkar Sthal, Samta Mulak Chowk, Prerna Sthal, Kanshi Ram Smarak and Buddha Vihar Shanti Upvan, the official who did not want to be named added.
The SP government, which has stated that statues of Mayawati and Dalit icons at the memorials will not be demolished, has sanctioned Rs 50 lakh for maintenance of the structures. The government has also made a budgetary provision of Rs 95 crore for salaries of around 5,700 people employed for the security and upkeep of the memorials.

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