Discuss as:

Indian election officials order cover-up of statues ahead of poll

Tsering Topgyal / AP

Workers prepare to cover a statue of Mayawati, chief minister of Uttar Pradesh state, at Ambedkar Park in Noida, on the outskirts of New Delhi, India, on Jan. 10, 2012.

Manan Vatsyayana / AFP - Getty Images

Workers wrap elephant statues at the Ambedkar Park in Noida, on the outskirts of New Delhi, India, on Jan. 10, 2012. Statues of a firebrand Indian politician, Mayawati, and her party symbol of an elephant were wrapped in cloth, under laws to prevent them being used as unfair election publicity.

The Associated Press reports from LUCKNOW, India:

Workmen using truckloads of cloth raced Monday to comply with election officials who ordered a flamboyant Indian state leader to cover up a dozen large statues she erected of herself.

The Election Commission said the statues of Mayawati, who is a hero to India's lowest castes, were built using public money and their display violates rules for next month's election in her Uttar Pradesh state.

The Election Commission also said that nearly 200 statues of elephants, her party's symbol, must be covered. Read the full story.