21:00 GMT23 February 2020
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    The Statue of Unity, built at a cost of 3 bln rupees ($430 mln), is twice the size of New York's Statue of Liberty. The tribute to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, whom Prime Minister Modi credits with unifying the nation, stands by the Narmada River in Gujarat, flanked by the picturesque Vindhya and Satpura mountain ranges.

    The State of Gujarat in India has become home to the world's tallest statue. The 182-meter (600 ft.) tall monument was unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 31, 2018 as a tribute to the man whom he claims united India —  Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.

    Named the 'Statue of Unity', the architectural marvel was constructed with 1,700 metric tons of bronze and 1,850 metric tons of bronze cladding, and its exterior was constructed using 565 macro and 6,000 micro panels.

    Dedicating the Statue of Unity to the nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said: "the day will always be remembered in history."

    ​The government of India expects the giant memorial to be a major attraction for travelers. Apart from being the world's tallest statue, the complex houses many other attractions for tourists, including a flower garden and visitor platforms offering a panoramic view of the nearby Sardar Sarovar Dam and the Narmada River.

    "From the Eiffel Tower to the Taj Mahal, history is replete with examples of iconic monuments outliving their costs and estimates and proving to be a major source of revenue. The debate on the cost incurred (building) the Sardar Patel memorial is irrelevant, as times to come will prove that it will be one of the most sought-after destinations for visitors coming to India," Denny M, Director of Santa Monica tourism consultants told Sputnik.

    ​The statue will have a viewing gallery at a height of 193 meters above sea level which can accommodate 200 visitors at a time. This gallery, at a height of 153 meters above the base of the structure, will offer visitors a view of the Sardar Sarovar Dam, its reservoir, and the Satpura and Vindhya mountain ranges.


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    monument, statue, tourism, unity, Bharatiya Janata party (BJP), Narendra Modi, Gujarat, India
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