In a supplementary budget tabled in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly on Aug 9, a whopping Rs 26 crore has been allocated for the security cover of Chief Minister Mayawati. Blasphemous it may sound, but that appears to be the reality in a state where people migrate to other places to have for themselves a better and prosperous life.
Media reports cite anonymous sources as saying that the money will be used to buy Ambassador cars and ten jammer vehicles.
For those, who are still gasping in disbelief, there is another shocker. In addition to the above amount, another Rs 20 crores have been set aside for the maintenance of two state government bungalows allotted to the Chief Minister in the capital city of Lucknow.
There is more in store for a state that ranks among one of the poorest ones in India, a massive amount of Rs 41 crore has been earmarked for the Kanshi Ram Eco park in Lucknow. And after all these excesses, a further one-fourth of the state's supplementary budget has been allocated for pro-Dalt schemes.
It can be recalled, that just last week, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) had slammed the Uttar Pradesh government for spending more than 66 crore rupees unnecessarily in building projects.
The projects based in Lucknow are - BR Ambedkar and the Kanshi Ram memorial. According to the auditor's report, the expenses were "avoidable".
The report also indicted that the stones used to build these memorials were transported from somewhere else and then transported to Lucknow causing the government a loss of Rs 15 crore and blames the CM of using over Rs 22 lakh in revising contracts for purchasing various stones.
The report however could not establish the amount of losses in installing statues worth Rs 287.65 crore.