Mayawati to raise special force to protect memorials


Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati Friday decided to raise an exclusive force of former servicemen for the protection of monuments dedicated to the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party’s (BSP) Dalit icons.

Support TwoCircles

The chief minister decided to go ahead with her plans even without Governor B.L. Joshi’s assent to a bill and ordinance for creation of such a security force.

Mayawati convened a meeting of the state cabinet Friday afternoon and took an administrative decision to proceed with raising the new force.

The force would be headed by a retired army officer of the rank of colonel.

The cabinet meeting was followed by a press conference, where state Cabinet Secretary Shashank Shekhar Singh gave justification for the government’s decision to go ahead without waiting for a word from the governor.

According to him, “the new force would be in place in the next 2-3 weeks.”

“Normally, one does not require a legislation to raise a special security force which could be done through an administrative order only; but because of certain extraordinary provisions the government had decided to adopt the constitutional process for which a bill was duly passed by the state assembly and forwarded to the governor as early as on Feb 18. However, when no word was received from Raj Bhavan for more than a month, the state government issued an ordinance, that was sent to Raj Bhavan on March 26,” Singh told mediapersons.

He said: “While it is the governor’s prerogative to take any view in the matter, the state government had no choice but to initiate the recruitment process for raising the new force because of the impending threats to the memorials and monuments erected as a mark of respect to icons of the downtrodden classes.”

“You are aware how such monuments, memorials and parks have become an eyesore for those opposed to these great social reformers belonging to the lower and backward castes,” he added.

“You can imagine the social upheaval that could be caused in case such elements manage to vandalise any of these spots. Therefore, it was imperative for us to ensure the protection and security of these places without any further delay.”

Principal Home Secretary Fateh Bahadur was entrusted with the task of raising the new force for which rules were also framed overnight.