Ahmedabad, Oct 31: Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled the 'Statue of Unity' at Kevadiya in Gujarat today. The 182-metre statue of Vallabhbhai Patel will be "dedicated to the nation" on his birth anniversary in Narmada district of Gujarat.
The Sardar Patel statue, twice as tall as the Statue of Liberty, has been built at a cost of Rs. 2,989 crore and is located in Gujarat, 3.2 km downstream of the Narmada dam.
PM Modi also did a virtual "abhishek" of the statue with the help of a lever. Also present at the venue are BJP chief Amit Shah, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Deputy CM Nitinbhai Patel. The guests were also presented with mementoes that were made of the same metal that was used to clad the statue. Just like Patel's idol, the mementoes will not age for the next 100 years.
The prime minister will perform a special prayer at the feet of the Statue of Unity and visit the museum and exhibition, and the viewers' gallery. The gallery, at 153 metres, can accommodate up to 200 people at a time and offers a spectacular view of the Sardar Sarovar Dam, its reservoir, and the Satpura and Vindhya mountain ranges.
Earlier in the day, a cultural programme was organised at the venue for the PM, following which took a walk through the tent city. Before reaching Gujarat in a chopper, he tweeted, "We bow to the great Sardar Patel, the stalwart who unified India and served the nation tirelessly, on his Jayanti." He also paid tribute to former PM Indira Gandhi on her death anniversary.