The world's tallest statue has been inaugurated in Gujarat on Wednesday, October 31. Dedicated to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, fondly known as the Iron Man of India, the Statue of Unity has been unveiled by PM Narendra Modi on the statesman's 143rd birth anniversary. Constructed at a cost of Rs 2,989 crore by construction and engineering company Larsen & Toubro Ltd the statue stands in the midst of the Narmada River, on the islet of Sadhu Bet.
Sardar Patel is credited for unifying all of the 562 princely states in pre-independence India to form what is today the Republic of India. Thus, the statue has been named 'Statue of Unity' as a tribute to his role. "The Statue will stand high, not just in meters and feet, but much more in terms of academic, historical, national and spiritual values. My vision is to develop the place as a source of inspiration for ages to come," PM Modi had said.
Tickets to visit the statue will be rolled out from November 3 and can be booked online on soutickets.in.
At 182 metre, the mammoth replica of Sardar Patel is the world's tallest statue, leaving behind USA's Statue of Liberty (93 metre), Japan's Ushiku Daibutsu (120 metre) and even China's Spring Temple Buddha (153 metre) statues. The statue has been built to withstand winds of 180km/hour and earthquakes of up to 6.5 Richter scale.
The exterior of statue is coated with 1,850 tonne of bronze. For the interior, 1,80,000 cubic metre of concrete cement, 18,500 tonne of reinforced steel and 6,500 tonne of structured steel has been used. Around 135 metric tonne of iron was brought in from lakhs of villages in India. Around 3,000 workers and 250 engineers worked together to create this statue.
Two elevators in the statue's core will take passengers up to the level of the statue's chest to a viewing gallery. The gallery can accommodate 200 visitors at one go and also offers stunning views of the river Narmada, its dam and the surrounding Satpura and Vindhyachal hills. There's also a selfie point for the shutterbugs.
A three-star hotel, a museum and audio visual gallery are located near the statue. Sadhu Bet is connected to the mainland by a 320-metre-long bridge. The government is also building a 3.5 km long highway from Kevadia town.
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