Published: Thu, November 01, 2018
Worldwide | By Victor Meyer

India unveils world's tallest statue "Statue of Unity"

India unveils world's tallest statue

The statute is in honour of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, a nationalist who helped unite modern India after gaining independence from Britain.

But now the BJP and RSS were gloating over a Rs 2,000-plus crore statue of Patel in Gujarat.

India has just unveiled the world's tallest statue, the Statue of Unity, standing 597 feet, which makes it nearly twice as tall as the Statue of Liberty.

As Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the world's tallest statue to celebrate Vallabhbhai Patel, Opposition parties on Wednesday questioned the BJP as to why there was no bigger statue for Mahatma Gandhi and also accused the ruling party of trying to "hijack" the legacy of Independence heroes like Sardar Patel.

Posters of Modi with Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani were torn down or had their faces blackened at the weekend.

Modi, who ordered the statue built on the Narmada river when he was Gujarat chief minister, said previous year there had been efforts to "belittle" or "remove from history" the contributions of Patel, who helped unite India's 562 princely states as the first home, or interior, minister.

The bronze-clad statue cost $430 million to build and houses a memorial garden and a museum at its base.

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The Air Force performed fly-past to mark the unveiling of the "Statue of Unity" by PM Modi.

Online booking to visit the Statue of Unity has opened with a 350 rupee admission fee for the 153m-high observation deck.

Patel led the Indian National Congress which forged the Indian movement for independence, following World War II when the party put pressure on the British government to pass an independence bill in July 1947.

The bronze statue is made up of almost 100,000 tons of steel and concrete.

At 182 metres, the statue will measure twice the height of the Statue of Liberty and nine times that of the Angel of the North. Farmers and members of India's tribal communities protested the statue before it was unveiled.

Indian policemen gather next to the Statue of Unity.

"In the process, not only will the Statue of Unity literally dwarf statues of all other Indians leaders, but the event will also enable the memory of Sardar to rise imposingly over Congress Party leaders", Mukhopadhyay said. The current design would make it 212 metres high.

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