Sardar Patel Jayanti 2023: 10 Facts About The Statue Of Unity

On the occasion of Sardar Vallabhai Patel’s birth anniversary, also known as National Unity Day, take a look at why the State of Unity is a fitting ode to the incredible leader
The Statue of Unity is the world's tallest statue
The Statue of Unity is the world's tallest

The Statue of Unity is a 600-foot tall monument that depicts the Indian freedom fighter, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. He was one of the founding fathers of the Republic of India and spent his life fighting for India's independence. The statue is a symbol of patriotism and represents Patel's legacy.

Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel with Gandhi
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel with

Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, born on October 31, 1875, played a crucial role in uniting India's princely states post-independence, earning him the title "Iron Man of India." Patel's leadership and vision were instrumental in unifying India as the first Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister. He was respected and admired for his contributions towards a unified and independent India. Patel passed away on December 15, 1950, leaving an enduring legacy as a revered leader.

Sardar Patel with Pundit Nehru
Sardar Patel with Pundit

Since 2014, Patel's birth anniversary on October 31 has been celebrated as National Unity Day. It serves as a commemoration of the great leader and his ideals of preserving the unity, integrity, and security of the nation. The day is also observed as Rashtriya Sankalp Diwas or National Pledge Day, as it marks the anniversary of the assassination of Indira Gandhi.

On this National Unity Day, explore the unique and grandiose Statue of Unity. Here are ten things you must know about Gujarat's colossal statue:

The Tallest In The World

A panoramic view of the Statue of Unity
A panoramic view of the Statue of UnityShutterstock

The world's tallest statue, the Statue of Unity, is located in the Indian state of Gujarat and stands at a towering 600 feet. The state government fully funded the INR 3,050-crore project, covering an area of 20,000 square metres and is surrounded by a 12 square kilometre artificial lake.

The Sculptor Behind

Erstwhile President Pranab Mukherjee presenting the Padma Bhushan Award to Shri Ram Vanji Sutar
Erstwhile President Pranab Mukherjee presenting the Padma Bhushan Award to Shri Ram Vanji SutarWikimedia Commons

The statue was designed by renowned Indian sculptor Ram V. Sutar and was unveiled to the public on October 31, 2018, on the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. Sutar is a Padma Bhushan Awardee and a Gold medalist from J.J. School of Art in Bombay.

A Picturesque Location

An aerial view of the Statue of Unity
An aerial view of the Statue of UnityShutterstock

The must-see statue is located on the picturesque river island of Sadhu Bet, near the famed Sardar Sarovar Dam on the Narmada River, providing visitors with a stunning view of the scenic landscape and enhancing the overall experience of the monument.

The Material Used

The Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Rashtriya Ekta Trust (SVPRET) was established by Modi in 2011 as a special purpose vehicle. Under the "Loha" campaign, the trust collected around 129 tonnes of iron implements from nearly 100 million farmers in 169,000 villages across all states. The collected iron was used to construct the base of the statue.

Around The Statue

Museum at the Statue of Unity
Museum at the Statue of UnityWikimedia Commons

In addition to the statue itself, the complex surrounding it houses an informative museum, an expansive exhibition hall, and a dedicated research centre, providing visitors with a comprehensive understanding of Sardar Patel's life, political journey, and crucial role in the country's post-independence nation-building process.

The Symbolism

The statue represents the ideals of unity and integrity, reflecting the essence of the "Statue of Unity Movement" and symbolising the rich cultural diversity and heritage of India, fostering a sense of national pride among its people.

Collaborative Efforts And Fruition

The construction of the Statue of Unity was a monumental effort, drawing expertise and labour from a diverse pool of engineers, architects, and workers from different parts of the country, showcasing the unity and collective spirit of India. The site has rapidly evolved into a prominent global tourist attraction, drawing visitors from all over the world to witness its grandeur and immerse themselves in the rich history and legacy of Sardar Patel's contributions to the nation's independence and unity.

Traversing Within

Visitors can ascend to an observation deck via a high-speed elevator, offering breathtaking panoramic views of the picturesque Narmada River and the scenic beauty surrounding the statue, creating an unforgettable and enriching experience for tourists and history enthusiasts alike.

Peripheral Development

Tent City Narmada near Statue of Unity
Tent City Narmada near Statue of

As part of the extensive development, the site has been transformed into a comprehensive tourist destination, complete with state-of-the-art facilities, including hotels, a convention centre, and a tranquil memorial garden, all contributing to the holistic experience of visiting the Statue of Unity.

The National Imagination

The Statue of Unity has become an integral part of Gujarat's tourism landscape, not just as a symbol of national pride but also as a testament to India's rich cultural and historical heritage, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in the story of a visionary leader and the remarkable journey of a united nation.

Sustainable Tourism

There are two ecotourism places near the Statue of Unity: Khalvani and Zarvani.

They are part of the Khalwani-Zarwani Eco Tourism Bus Tour at the Statue of Unity. The tour starts at the Statue of Unity Bus Parking and explores attractions in Kevadia. The tour drives along lush green hills and is cost-effective.

On the tour, you can visit Vishwa Van, Khalwani Eco-Tourism Campsite, Aarogya Van, Ekta Nursery, Cactus Garden, Butterfly Garden, Dino Trail and Zarvani Adventure Sports Site. Travellers are advised to travel responsibly and contribute in keeping the place green and clean.

The Information

How to reach: The nearest airport to the Statue of Unity is the Vadodara Airport at 90 km, and the nearest railway station is the Vadodara Railway Station. Private taxis are readily available from the airport and railway station.

Timings: 9 am to 5 pm from Tuesdays to Sundays; closed on Mondays.

Entry fee: INR 150 for adults and INR 90 for children.

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