Prime Minister Narendra Modi has unveiled the Statue of Unity, built as a tribute to freedom movement icon Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on his 143rd birth anniversary today. Air Force planes showered flowers on the statue in a grand inaugural event on the banks of the Narmada river in Gujarat as PM Modi dedicated it to the nation. Built at a cost of Rs. 2,989 crore, the statue depicts Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, India's first Home Minister, wearing a traditional dhoti and shawl, towering over the Narmada River. Iron was collected from all over the country for the statue of Sardar Patel, also known as the Iron Man of India. At 182-metre, the statue is touted as the world's tallest - it is 177 feet higher than China's Spring Temple Buddha, currently the world's tallest statue.
The statue has been designed by Padma Bhushan-winning sculptor Ram V Sutar and has been built by Larsen and Toubro and the state-run Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd. It took about 250 engineers and 3,400 labourers to construct the statue in 33 months.
The statue will have a viewing gallery at the height of 193 metres from the sea level which can accommodate 200 visitors at a time. This gallery, at 153 metres height, will offer a view of the Sardar Sarovar Dam, its reservoir, and the Satpura and Vindhya mountain ranges
Here are the highlights on the unveiling of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel's Statue of Unity:
"Even today Sardar Patel is pertinent, an example of country's unity. Now forces of breaking the nation are more active than earlier----some in the name of caste, some in the name of communalism...There is a necessity to give a fitting reply to such forces," Mr Das said.
- Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel had said infighting was the reason for India's subordination by foreign powers; never again will India make the same mistake and never will India again be enslaved.
- The Statue of Unity is a reminder to those who question the existence of India; India was eternal, is eternal and will always remain eternal.
- Kutch to Kohima and Kargil and Kanyakumari, if we can travel freely today, it is because of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
- Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel led the path for India, walking on which we are talking with the world on our own terms now.
- This day is historic. India's Present has recalled golden moment from India's past.
Principal Director General (M&C), Press Information Bureau, Shri Sitanshu R. Kar administering the #RashtriyaEktaDiwas pledge to the officials of the @PIB_India, on the occasion of #SardarVallabhbhaiPatel's birth anniversary, in New Delhi pic.twitter.com/2IItcx3Lx0- PIB India (@PIB_India) October 31, 2018
"No one knows better than myself how much he(Nehruji) has laboured 4india in the last 2Yr of our difficult existence.I've seen him age quickly during that period,on account of the worries of the high office he holds& the tremendous responsibilities that he wields"- #SardarPatel- Arjun Modhwadia (@arjunmodhwadia) October 31, 2018
- The contribution of the tribals, farmers and villagers, who helped make this possible cannot be ignored, I thank them from the bottom of my heart. Without your help and contribution, this would not be possible today. With the Statue of Unity, you (tribals and farmers) have enshrined your names in history too.
- The Statue of Unity is also going to bring prosperity to the tribals, farmers and villagers in this region. The Statue of Unity will help better the livelihoods of locals and tribals in the area. It will bring with itself, immense opportunities for business. Because of tourism, when the world descends here, this region will prosper.
- Sardar Patel was made the Home Minister of India at the country's most difficult period. No one can imagine how he managed to keep India from disintegrating after partition. The greatness of his deeds cannot be put in words. Each and every one of us owe it to this man for what he has done for the country.
- Statue of Unity is a symbol of India's integrity, India's resolve, India's determination and India's unity.... It shows that India was, is and always will be eternal.
- It is a symbol that 'Ek Bharat is Shreshth Bharat'.
- This is the tallest statue in the world. People the world over will not only visit this site, but also remember this. They will not only remember this marvel, but remember the great people of India.
- There were many pessimists who used to always think that a diverse country like India can never remain United. It will fall apart. But, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel showed how it is done. We should learn how to grow from strength to strength, how to always stay united.
- Sardar Patel used Kautilya's wisdom and Shivaji Maharaj's bravery to achieve the great feat of uniting India after partition. He did something that was unparalleled.
- From Kutch to Kohima, from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, Sardar Patel united the country. This shows what a great resolve he had.
- It is because of him that we can travel to all the great sites and meet the great people of all the states without a visa.
- If it wasn't for Sardar Patel, there would be no rail line from Kashmir to Kanyakumari.
- Today is a historic day for India... I want to start by congratulating all Indians including those settled abroad.
- It is this feeling of being united, of togetherness, that has kept India going for thousands of years.
- I thank all those who came forward and took part in the 'Run for Unity' today.=
- Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was responsible for us living in a United India today. It was his efforts after Independence that led to India being what it is today.
- Because of your blessings, I have been given the honour to be the one who dedicates this amazing statue to the nation. I am truly humbled and feel truly blessed. I thank you all for giving me this opportunity.
- I was given the first piece of iron that was contributed for this marvel. I am giving it for you all to see at the museum here at the Statue of Unity.
- This is a project that we had thought about during the time I was the Chief Minister of Gujarat
Today, we celebrate #NationalUnityDay and unveil the #StatueofUnity to commemorate the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. In his own words, we must remove distinctions of high & low, rich & poor and caste & creed to live in harmony with one another. pic.twitter.com/D1iPrxKXtB- Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) October 31, 2018
- At 597 feet or 182 metres, the Statue of Unity will be the world's tallest statue. It is 177 feet higher than China's Spring Temple Buddha, which was the tallest statue till now, and approximately five times taller than the Statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
- This statue is built on an island in the Narmada, the fifth longest river in the Indian subcontinent, which runs in a rift valley between the Vindhya and Satpura ranges. The region is famous for its hardwood forests and sanctuaries.
- The Statue of Unity was built at an estimated cost of Rs. 2,989 crore.
- It was designed by Padma Bhushan-winning sculptor Ram V Sutar and built by construction firm Larsen and Toubro and the state-run Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd (SSNNL).
- It is being built approximately 3.5 kms south of the Sardar Sarovar Dam, the second largest concrete gravity dam (by volume) in the world.
- Visitors will be able to use high-speed lifts to reach the Statue's viewing gallery, and enjoy a panoramic view of the Sardar Sarovar Dam and its 256 km long reservoir, the beautiful Vindhya and Satpura mountain ranges, and the 12 km long Garudeshwar reservoir, from an astounding height of around 500 feet.
- It has the longest canal network in the world and includes the Narmada Main Canal, around 2,500 km of branch canals, 5,500 km of distributaries, and other associated channels.
- The Statue of Unity will include a state-of-the-art museum that will comprise audio-visual exhibits depicting the life and times of the great Indian leader and statesman, Sardar Vallabhbai Patel.
- The statue will be accessed by a boat ride of 3.5 km, to avoid vehicular traffic and pollution.
- The statue has been designed by Padma Bhushan-winning sculptor Ram V Sutar and has been built by Larsen and Toubro and the state-run Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd. It took about 250 engineers and 3,400 labourers to construct the statue in 33 months.
- Kheda Satyagraha and Bardoli Satyagrah, both of which times the British bowed down
- Elected as Ahmedabad's municipal president in 1924 and 1928
- Elected President of the Indian National Congress in 1931
- Independent India's first Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister and IB Minister
- The Architect of United India post independence
- Posthumously, conferred with Bharat Ratna in 1991
The Gujarat Congress Tuesday has dubbed the event as a "BJP programme". The main opposition party said none of its leaders will take part in the statue dedication ceremony.
देश को एकता के सूत्र में पिरोने वाले लौह पुरुष सरदार वल्लभभाई पटेल को उनकी जयंती पर कोटि-कोटि नमन।- Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 31, 2018
We bow to the great Sardar Patel, the stalwart who unified India and served the nation tirelessly, on his Jayanti.