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Updated: November 13, 2009 22:24 IST

Supreme Court rejects Mayawati’s plea on statues row

J. Venkatesan
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A scene at Noida's Ambedkar park where construction work has been stopped. SC on Friday had rejected Mayawati's plea for permission to undertake maintenance and other works at the site. File Photo: S. Subramanium
The Hindu A scene at Noida's Ambedkar park where construction work has been stopped. SC on Friday had rejected Mayawati's plea for permission to undertake maintenance and other works at the site. File Photo: S. Subramanium

The Supreme Court on Friday declined permission to the Mayawati government to undertake maintenance and certain other works at the Ambedkar Sthal in Lucknow.

A Bench consisting of Justices H. S. Bedi and J. M. Panchal told R.S. Suri, senior counsel for Uttar Pradesh, that there was no change of circumstances to grant the relief.

On October 6, the court confirmed the order restraining the government from carrying out any further activity at the memorials including Ambedkar Sthal.

The Bench said it would take up for hearing on November 30 the State government’s application, which sought permission to go ahead with the maintenance work, saying lakhs of people would visit the site on December 6 on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.

Senior counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for petitioner Mithilesh Kumar Singh, and the Gomti Nagar Sanstha opposed grant of permission stating the government could not be trusted as it earlier violated the undertaking given to the court that there would be no construction activity.

In its application, filed earlier this month, the government sought lifting of the stay on construction activities stating that in view of the interim orders it had become quite impossible to carry out even repairs and maintenance work at various properties “which are the subject matter of nine writ petitions.”

As these memorials, including Ambedkar Sthal, had been dedicated to the nation and opened to the public, it was necessary to carry out repairs as might be required from time to time, the application said.

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