A team of sculptors spent 26,000 man-hours of “intense artistic endeavour” to carve a grand statue of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, to be unveiled at the India Gate, from a monolithic block of granite weighing 280 MT, the Culture Ministry said on Wednesday.
A 100-ft-long truck with 140 wheels was specially designed for this giant granite stone to travel 1,665 km from Khammam in Telangana to New Delhi, it said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will Thursday inaugurate the newly-christened Kartavya Path – a stretch from Rashtrapati Bhavan to India Gate- and will also unveil the 28-ft statue of Bose at India Gate.
Installation work was underway on Wednesday on the eve of its unveiling. It will be housed in the India Gate canopy.
The jet black granite statue has been carved from a monolithic block of granite weighing 280 MT, the Culture Ministry said in a statement.
“After 26,000 man-hours of intense artistic endeavour, the granite monolith was chiselled to produce a statue weighing 65 MT,” it said.
The statue is completely “hand sculpted using traditional techniques and modern tools”. The team of sculptors was led by Arun Yogiraj.
The statue is being installed at the same place where a ‘hologram statue’ of Netaji was unveiled earlier this year on Parakram Diwas (January 23) by the prime minister to mark the 125th birth anniversary of Bose, it said.
The towering statue of Netaji is “one of the tallest, realistic, monolithic, handmade sculptures in India”.
The prime minister had on January 21 assured that a grand statue of Netaji made of granite will be installed at India Gate as a symbol of the nation’s “indebtedness” to him.
“His arrival at the canopy for the unveiling of the statue will be heralded with traditional Manipuri Shankh Vadayam and Kerala’s traditional Panch Vadayam and Chanda.
“The unveiling of the statue of Netaji would be accompanied to the tune of Kadam Kadam Badhayeja, the traditional INA song,” the statement said.
The festival at ‘Kartvya Path’ would commence at 08.45 PM on September 8 after the main function and it will continue from September 9-11 from 7-9 pm, it said.
A special 10-minute drone show on Netaji’s life would be projected at India Gate at 8 pm on September 9, 10 and 11. Both the cultural festival and the drone show would be open to the public with free entry, the ministry said.
To demonstrate the spirit of Ek Bharat – Shrestha Bharat and unity in diversity a cultural festival by 500 dancers drawn from all parts of the country, would be showcased on the ‘Kartvya Path’.
A glimpse of the same would be shown to the Prime Minster on the step amphitheatre near India Gate by around 30 artists, who will perform tribal folk art forms such as Sambalpuri, Panthi, Kalbelia, Kargam and dummy horse with live music from Nashik’s Dhol Pathik Tasha and drums.
Mangalgaan penned by Padma Bhushan Pt. Shrikrishna Ratanjankarji on the auspicious occasion of the first Independence Day of India in 1947 is being presented by Pt. Suhas Vashi along with a team of singers and musicians, the statement said.