PM Modi unveils world's tallest structure, 'Statue of Unity' in Gujarat's Kevadia

India prepares to inaugurate the world's tallest statue

The foundation was laid five years ago, on October 31, 2013, by Modi when he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat. He is also seen as an important figure in uniting the country, and is credited with convincing most of the individual states in the region to join India over Pakistan after the British left.

The world's tallest statue was unveiled in India's Gujarat state on Wednesday in a ceremony filled with pomp, circumstance and heightened security.

Including the pedestal, the Statue of Liberty stands about half as tall at 305 feet.

At 182 meters, it is the tallest statue in the world built at a cost of $610 million in Kevadiya, a village in Gujarat state.

The Air Force performed fly-past to mark the unveiling of the "Statue of Unity" by PM Modi.

The government said that it took over 70,000 tonnes of cement, 18,500 tonnes of reinforced steel and 6,000 tonnes of structural steel to put the statue together. He said that the government is continuing Sardar's vision of unifying country by through economic unity by bringing in Goods and Services Tax (GST). The Prime Minister also visited the museum on the life of Sardar Patel at the base of the statue and also went to the viewers' gallery in the statue which has been created at the height of 152 metre.

'This monument will not just be a mute memorial like the rest, but a fully functional, purpose-serving tribute that will spur all round socio-economic development.

But the authorities took no chances in case community groups staged protests to condemn the decision to spend 29.9 billion rupees ($400 million) -much of it public funds- to build the statue over a almost four-year period.

Vishal Shah wrote on YouTube in response to a promotional video: "This is ridiculous project, what would we achieve from it?"

The accusations are a distortion of history, says Congress, which ruled India for much of its independence history and is now led by Rahul Gandhi, the great-grandson of Jawaharlal Nehru, India's first prime minister.

The party declared that India would not support the war until it had been granted complete independence.

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