Posted on 14 April 2011
Noida Ambedkar park not ready, celebrations shift to Lucknow
This year's announcements include sops for legal fraternity worth Rs 700 crore
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati's plans to inaugurate the
controversial Ambedkar Park in Noida on the 120th birth anniversary of
Dr Bhim Rao Ambedkar suffered a setback on Thursday. A day before the
grand function was to take place, officials informed her that work on
the park was not complete.
Sources say that the construction work will take another two to three
months to be completed. Mayawati was supposed to inaugurate the park
and unveil statues of Ambedkar during the birth anniversary
The park project, which had run into controversy because of the
felling of more than 6,000 trees, was cleared by the Supreme Court in
December last year. It is being built on an area of 33.43 hectares. It
lies next to the Okhla Birds Sanctuary. Environmentalists have opposed
the construction of the park on the grounds that it will reduce the
buffer zone of the sanctuary drastically.
Keeping this in mind, the court had ordered that the total constructed
area in the park be reduced from the earlier 38 percent to 25 percent.
The order also said that 50 percent of the project area, which lies
close to the sanctuary, be provided a dense tree cover and 25 percent
be given grass cover. It had also ordered that only indigenous species
of trees be planted.
Engineers at the site said that the implementation of the court
judgment has led to the delays. "Earlier we were planning to plant
different tress, but we have had to uproot many of them. Also,
reduction in the concretised area has forced us to alter the designs
at many places and shift the statues of Mayawati, Kanshi Ram and
Ambedkar. But, the construction work is going on in full swing and
will be completed soon," a senior official of the Noida Authority told
Tehelka on condition of anonymity.
As per the environmental norms, a buffer zone of 500 metres should be
maintained next to protected areas, such as bird sanctuaries. In this
case, the Uttar Pradesh government cut down 6,241 trees and shifted
512 trees to other parks and planned a built-up area of 6,999 square
A new, and even bigger, house for Mayawati
Statuary Rights And Privileges
The apex court allowed the project to go ahead after the government
records showed that the area is not officially recognised as forest
Announcements made from Lucknow
Mayawati had planned to announce schemes and assistance for the
lawyers and the overall legal structure in the state from the Noida
venue on the Ambedkar Jayanti. She ended up making the announcements
She announced funds worth more than Rs 700 crores for strengthening
the legal structure in the state. She sanctioned Rs 610 crore for the
benefit of lawyers, including Rs 500 crore for a new building of the
Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court.
She pointed out that the plan to build a new building of the Lucknow
bench of the Allahabad High Court has been pending for a long time but
the Centre, also a contributor for the project, has not allocated the
funds yet. "But we are releasing our share of 70 percent funds.
Additional funds will be provided, if required," she said in a
Mayawati has also sanctioned Rs 60 crore for insurance of lawyers,
pension to their widows, if the need arises, funds for chambers and
computers in bar councils through a body designated for this work.
An additional fund of Rs 50 crore will be sanctioned for the library
facility for judges and to meet their other requirements.
Also, free legal facilities will be provided to people living below
the poverty line and the beneficiaries of Mukhyamantri Mahamaya Gareeb
Arthik Madad Yojna.
Arpit Parashar is a Senior Correspondent with Tehelka.com
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