Mumbai, Jan 15 : The Maharashtra Government has decided to increase the height of the proposed statue of Bharat Ratna Dr. B. R. Ambedkar from the originally planned 250 feet to 350 feet, standing on a 100 feet high pedestal, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said here on Wednesday.
“The Cabinet viewed a presentation of the grand memorial project and approved the proposal to augment the height of the bronze statue by 100 feet. The project is expected to be completed within two years and there would be no dearth of funds for it,” Pawar told mediapersons.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had laid the foundation stone for the ‘State of Equality’ in Oct. 2015, in the Indu Mills Compound, spread over 12.50 acres land.
The proposed grand memorial to Ambedkar – the Architect of Indian Constitution – will have a 600-seat auditorium, a 400-capacity library and research centre, symbols and artefacts of Buddhism, a six-metre wide circular pathway around the memorial.
The project will be supervised by the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), and will be an eco-friendly monument with 68 percent free spaces without disturbing the local environment on the Arabian Sea shores.
He alleged that the previous Bharatiya Janata Party-led government did nothing in the matter during its tenure, but now the matter has been speeded up to complete it within two years.
However, Republican Sena President Anandraj Y. Ambedkar, the youngest grandson of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, accused Ajit Pawar of “misleading” the people as the original height of the statue was 350 feet.
“We have demanded that the statue alone should be 450 feet tall, besides the pedestal height. After we raised this demand, the height of Statue of Unity of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was increased to almost 600 feet,” Anandraj Ambedkar told IANS.
He said that if the Maharashtra government is not able to make the Statue of Equality 450 feet tall plus the pedestal, then “move out, we shall complete the project and give a grand memorial to the world”.