Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has allocated Rs 200 crore for the Sardar Patel statue project in Gujarat. The proposed project is a colossal iron-and-bronze statue almost twice the size of the Statue of Liberty.
The proposed budget for a 182-meter (nearly 600 feet)-tall replica of Indian independence leader Vallabhbhai Patel caused an outcry, with many people saying the country has far more urgent priorities.
Others lamented how the budget earmarks more money for the Patel statue than for women’s safety nationwide, which got 1.5 billion rupees ($25 million), or the education of young girls at 1 billion rupees ($16.5 million).
It was the first budget of a new government elected on promises to revive stalled economic growth.
Here is how twitterati reacted to the budget allocation for the Patel statue.
The decision to build a statue for Sardar Patel was a political decision of Modi before elections. Not because of some love of art.
— Dhaakad Tau (@Bawli_Booch) July 10, 2014
Indian right has some nerve calling Patel statue art after they terrorized a true artist like Hussain & forced him into heartbreaking exile.
— Sonia Faleiro (@soniafaleiro) July 10, 2014
100 crore for girl child education. 200 for Sardar Patel statue. #ChaloKoini
— Satbir Singh (@thesatbir) July 10, 2014
— Tusha Mittal (@tushamittal) July 10, 2014
To be honest, can’t wait for Modi’s selfie on Sardar Patel’s statue.
— Dorkstar (@Dorkstar) July 10, 2014
Dude: 200 cr. for Sardar Patel Statue, 500 cr. for rural power? #Budget2014
— Deepak Shenoy (@deepakshenoy) July 10, 2014
— Devirupa Mitra (@DevirupaM) July 10, 2014
With agency inputs
The parties concerned have been directed to submit reports on the current status of construction.