New Delhi, July 8: The Delhi High Court on Friday sent back to the Election Commission to consider a plea seeking cancellation of the BSP’s election symbol of elephant for installing statues of the animal at public places at government expense. Justice R.S. Endlaw said: “The matter is remanded back to Election Commission.”
The plea filed by NGO Common Cause alleged that installation of permanent statues of elephants at public places in Uttar Pradesh by the then Mayawati government “disturbs the level-playing field” in elections. The NGO moved the High Court after the Election Commission rejected its plea to cancel the Bahujan Samaj Party’s election symbol for using state funds to erect the statues. The poll panel had said that the then BSP government had not furnished information about the exact number and location of statues of elephants. The NGO told the court that the then Mayawati government spent crores of rupees to install statues of elephants at various public places in the state.
The NGO claimed the model code of conduct was also violated by the party by constructing the statues at state expense. “If the display of a photograph inside an office can vitiate the level playing field, the installation of a permanent statue at a public place, which is visible at all times to every passerby, can be said to have a deeper impact on the mind of the electorate,” the plea said. (IANS)