Marking the 143rd birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel; Iron Man of India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled the ‘‘Statue of Unity’’ on 31st October 2018. The 182-meter statue has been revealed in honour of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, who was a major figure in the Indian independence movement and is known as one of the Founding Fathers of the Republic of India to many. The statue is located on a river island known as Sadhu Bet close to Sardar Sarovar dam near Narmada district in Gujarat.
During the unveiling of the monument, PM Modi said: “With the blessings of the entire country, the “Statue of Unity” is being launched today. I congratulate all those who have worked day and night to ensure that this grand statue in tribute of Sardar Patel becomes a reality.”
The Statue of Unity Movement started almost 5 years ago with most of the funds being raised by the Government of Gujarat. Currently, it is the tallest statue in the world which is twice the height of the Statue of Liberty. The bronze statue was completed in a record time of 33 months. Indian infrastructure company Larsen and Toubro (L&T) designed and built the statue using over 75,000 tonnes of cement, 7000 tonnes of structural steel, 19,000 tonnes of reinforced steel and around 2000 metric tonnes of bronze. The statue was designed by Ram.V. Sutar.
L&T has stated that the monument can withstand almost 180km of wind speeds per second and earthquakes of about 6.5 on the Richter Scale within a radius of about 12km from the Statue.
PM Modi has stated that the “Statue of Unity” is a symbol of both the unity of hearts and the geographical integrity of our motherland as a reminder that divided, we may not be able to face ourselves. But United, we can face the world and scale new heights of glory.
The monument has been strategically placed in a location where it can be visualized as Iron Man of India walking on the banks of the Narmada river towards Sardar Sarovar dam. It is already being considered as an engineering prodigy and is expected to become a popular tourist destination in the country.