Wednesday, January 15, 2003, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

10 cr for Maya’s birthday bash
Biswajeet Banerjee

Lucknow, January 14
The Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati’s birthday on January 15 has become an official event for which regular meetings are being held to fix responsibility of different government departments to ensure that nothing should be left undone to escape wrath of “behanji”.

Officially named as Swabhiman Divas, the birthday will be a major event which will be attended by thousands of people coming to the state capital from different parts of the country. Many government departments are working overtime to make the event memorable.

The UP Congress, yesterday released the minutes of one such meeting convened by the Sachivalaya Administration on December 27, detailing the different tasks entrusted to various departments.

The UPCC spokesman, Mr Akhilesh Pratap Singh, alleged that the government was spending Rs 10 crore on the birthday celebrations and demanded an inquiry into the expenditure. “There had been grave crisis like suicides by cane growers or deaths of farmers in police firing at Munderwa but no meeting was held on these issues but to make birthday arrangements foolproof, regular meetings have been held since December”, he said.

According to the minutes of the meeting that was attended by senior officials of all important departments, the district administration has been asked to arrange for thousands of kilos of special ‘laddoos’ that will be distributed among 25,000 odd guests at the function at La Martiniere School grounds, the venue of the bash on January 15.

The Public Works Department (PWD) will take care of arrangements in ‘pandal’ at the venue. The Lucknow Development Authority (LDA) will be responsible for the decoration of the stage and the entire venue. The Lucknow police will take care of the public address system, security at the venue and the parking of vehicles.

As a special ‘gift’ to the people of the Bahujan Samaj, the government has directed the LDA to waive off entry fee for visitors at the Ambedkar Memorial on January 15. The State Information Department will be putting up an exhibition highlighting the achievements of the Mayawati government and depicting the personality of the Chief Minister.

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