Over three months after Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath checked the initial presentation for the construction of “Ram Statue” in Ayodhya on the lines of Statue of Unity in Gujarat, the state cabinet Saturday cleared Rs 200 crore for the preparation of the project. Moreover, based on the Gujarat model, a trust will also be formed under the chairmanship of the chief minister to oversee the project.
Besides, it also decided to form a high-powered committee, chaired by the CM, which will also have deputy CMs as well as three other cabinet ministers. Besides, five technical panels will also be constituted. The move comes at a time when the EC is likely to announce Lok Sabha election schedule soon. Cabinet Minister Srikant Sharma called it an “ambitious project” of the Chief Minister.
It has been decided that while the state government would spend funds for development of the infrastructure surrounding the statue and for promoting tourism in Ayodhya, the funds for the construction of the statue will be collected through donations or corporate social responsibility.
The state government has also decided to sign Memorandum of Understanding with the Gujarat government to understand the engineering preparations of the Statue of Unity. Citing example of the Statue of Liberty in New York and the Eiffel Tower in France, Avaneesh Awasthi, additional Chief Secretary (Tourism), said that the proposed statue will make Ayodhya iconic from the point of view of tourism.
“Twenty-eight hectares will be acquired in the first phase for the project, while an MOU will be signed with the Gujarat government for engineering, architectural and other technical guidance,” said Awasthi, adding, “it has also been decided that while the government will develop the infrastructure and facilities surrounding the site, the statue will not be built through government funds.” He further said, “Jo pratima banegi, koi sarkar dhan kharcha nahi hoga, CSR se ya daan se banegi. (For the statue, no government funds will be spent. CSR funds or donations will be used for the purpose).”
The cabinet also cleared the details of the newly launched “Kanya Sumangala Yojna”, allocation for which was made in the recently-tabled state budget. As per the scheme, financial aid will be given to girl children in six phases. While Rs 2,000 will be given soon after her birth, Rs 1,000 will be given after she completets one year and subsequently after entire immunisation. Another Rs 2,000 will be given after she enters Class 1 and another Rs 2,000 when she is in Class 6 and Rs 3,000 when she is in Class 9. Finally, she will be given Rs 5,000 when she begins higher education.