It's twice as tall as the Statue of Liberty

Larry Hoffman
November 1, 2018

"The statue will go on to become the symbol of Sardar's vow and bravery that he displayed in uniting the country", said Modi, adding that the statue is also the symbol farmers of the country whose soil and tools became the foundation of the statue. "We should remember him always", Tharoor said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the 181m tall statue of India's late independence leader Sardar Vallabbhai Patel on the bank of the Narmada river in Kevadia, in the western state of Gujarat, MailOnline Travel reports.

While the launch of the statue was a big event, one can't help but wonder if this tourism attraction is going to bring in competition for Gujarat's most popular winter festival that's famously known for its tent city, the Rann Utsav.

The height of the statue is to remind the youth that the future of the country will be as huge as this.

Posters of Mr Modi with Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani were torn down or had their faces blackened at the weekend.

Modi described the statue as "an answer to all those who question the existence of India".

"I am not against Sardar, but what is the use of the statue if the people on the land have to suffer and are moved from their homes?" local legislator and community group leader Chotu Vasava said.

Students sit in formation to pay tribute to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, one of the founding fathers of India, ahead of the unveiling of the Statue of Unity portraying Patel.

"Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel never indulged either in caste politics or politics based on religion".

The BJP says Congress has deliberately ignored leaders such as Patel, B.R. Ambedkar, who led the drafting of the constitution, and freedom fighter Subhas Chandra Bose.

"All those in the BJP, the RSS and company need to apologise, especially to the people of the Bahujan Samaj Party, for terming the statues installed by the then BSP government to honour icons like Baba Saheb Ambedkar and others as wasteful expenditure", she said in a statement released in Lucknow.

Some of the leaders Modi has branded as "forgotten" came from the opposition Congress party, and fought for independence from colonial ruler Britain in 1947. The statue has been built to withstand winds of 180km/hour and earthquakes of up to 6.5 Richter scale.

Along with a visitor's centre, the Statue of Unity will have a viewing gallery at more than 152 metres, which can accommodate up to 200 visitors at a time, offering expansive views of the surrounding area.

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