The Mayawati government has refuted media reports that it continued with construction at memorial sites in Lucknow even after giving an undertaking in the Supreme Court on September 8 to stop all activities forthwith.
Chief Secretary Atul Kumar Gupta, in his affidavit filed on Thursday, said what was done after the September 8 order related to repairs to the road, footpath, drain and toilet; finishing of stone works/pedestals, grass turfing, and plantation of trees; removal of stagnant water, and of unused and scrap material from various places; and dismantling of steel pipes (scaffolding) along with repairs to and touching up stone works.
The affidavit, filed in response to the court direction, said: “Not only has the State government the highest regard for the orders passed by the Supreme Court, but [it] has also issued appropriate instructions and directions to ensure that the undertaking given to the court is complied with in letter and in spirit. Notwithstanding this, if any transgression has occurred, I tender the most profuse apology for the same, and humbly submit that [if any transgression has happened] the same was entirely unintended.”
Regarding the news item published in The Hindu on September 11, the Chief Secretary said chiselling and finishing work was being carried out by the Public Works Department on the wall running along Jail Road. The wall was constructed on the footpath of Jail Road and was not part of the Kanshiram Smarak Sthal.
Necessary maintenance works like cleaning the area and removal of scrap were being done at memorials, sthals, and maidans, but no construction activity was being carried out as was sought to beportrayed by the print and electronic media, he said.