Bengaluru: The Siddaramaiah-led Congress government is all set to install the world’s largest Valmiki statue in Karnataka soon. The 22-feet black stone statue of Bhagwan Valmiki, which is nearing completion in Tamil Nadu’s Mahabalipuram, will be installed at the Vidhana Soudha premises in the southern state.
The statue, which weighs over 25 tonnes and is being built at a cost of Rs 1 crore, will be first of its kind in the world.
“Black stone is being used to build the statue. The idol of Bhagwan Valmiki itself is 12 feet tall but it will touch to 22 feet once the deity is placed on the Mandapam,” said M Narasimahaiah leader of the Valimiki community.
A three-acre Valmiki Tapovan (spiritual mediation) center would also come up in front of legislative house, informed Narasimahaiah.
The Karnataka government has been celebrating Valmiki Jayanthi since 2010. Apart from celebrating it as a mark of respect for the writer of Ramayana and saint Valmiki, successive governments have been appealing to the Valmikis as they form fourth largest (7%) community of Karnataka’s six-crore population.
Defending the move, a senior Congress leader said it is not being done for political considerations but as a mark of respect for the great saint.
“Chief Minister Siddaramaiah allotted a site for Valmiki Tapovan and also provided three crore rupees as financial assistance for the construction of the huge statue and beautification of the park. Community people also contributed for the project,” said Ugrappa.
“When there are statues of Basavaanna, Nehru, Nijalingappa and others, why can’t there be a statue of Bhagwan Valmiki?” Ugrappa questioned.