The Sardar Patel Statue of Unity was unveiled on Wednesday, October 30, by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Gujarat.
The 182-metre statue, twice the size of the Statue of Liberty, is built at a cost of Rs 2,989 crore.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Deputy CM Nitin Patel and BJP chief Amit Shah were also present there.
“It will be an answer to those who question India’s existence”, PM Modi said at the inaugural ceremony in Gujarat’s Kevadiya district.
Narendra Modi credited Sardar Patel for a “United India” and said that had Sardar Patel not united India, we would have required visas to visit every places in India.
Watch Narendra Modi’s full speech here
Air Force planes showered flowers on the statue as the Prime Minister dedicated the statue to the people of the country.
Nearly 3,400 labourers and 250 engineers, using 25,000 tonnes of iron and 90,000 tonnes of steel, worked round-the-clock at the site of the statue on Sadhu Bet island on the Narmada river.
The core of the statue is made up of reinforced concrete and its first phase is spread across 19,000 metres area.
The statue has been a brainchild of Modi since he became Chief Minister of Gujarat and its foundation stone was laid on October 2013.
The statue has been constructed at the Sadhu Island on Narmada, 3.2 km downstream of Sardar Sarovar Dam.
Also read- PM Modi unveils Statue of Unity.
However, it has also received backlash from political oppositions and the point of spending almost Rs 3,000 crores for a mere statue has often been raised.
The bronze panels, that were used in the statue, have been made in China and also scores of Chinese workers have often been spotted in the construction site. The opposition took this chance to criticize Modi’s Make in India campaign.
Thousands of Tribals will supposedly organize a mass protest against the statue because allegedly their lands were taken away by the government.
The opposition thinks that this statue holds nothing but political benefit to the BJP because Sardar Patel was the Sardar was against the building of statues and memorials to glorify leaders.
— Jignesh Mevani (@jigneshmevani80) October 31, 2018