BSP supremo Mayawati, who faced opposition attack during her last stint as UP Chief Minister over building memorials to dalit icons, including her mentor Kanshi Ram and herself, on Thursday promised she would not construct new monuments and focus on development if voted to office again.Mayawati, who was accused of squandering public money running into thousands of crore of rupees on memorials which also had giant replicas of elephant, her party’s election symbol, said all such monuments that needed to be built in the honour of dalit icons have already been built.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”When I come to power, I’ll not build memorials, because my work is over. Now I’ll focus only on development,” she said.Referring to opposition’s criticism over building those memorials, museums, and parks, Mayawati said, “They (her rivals) said the government money is being wasted. But now they are earning money from tickets on them. Now the criticism is that Mayawati had installed these statues so that she could put her own next to them.”She claimed her statues were installed next to Kanshi Ram’s because of his “modern thinking, written will and verbal instructions”.”My statue was installed next to his (Ram’s) as his successor and for dedicating my life to realising Ambedkar’s dreams and welfare of dalits,” she said.”When this memorial was being built, Kanshi Ram said had Ambedkar been alive he’d have been very happy,” she claimed.On statues of elephants at these memorials, she said those were installed as a “symbol of welcome” and not because the animal is her party’s election symbol.
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