Bangalore: After Yogi Adityanath crowned as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, his (BJP) Bharatiya Janata Party government, is taking numerous steps in banning cow slaughter houses all over the state and announcing welfare schemes for the poor. It is well known to all, that directly or indirectly, Yogi’s government is promoting Hinduism and taking steps for the development of the religion in particular. His recent announcement about the proposal of 100 meter tall statue of Lord Ram to governor Ram Naik after a presentation by Tourism Principal Secretary, Awanish Kumar Awasthi, on the banks of River Saryu aka Saryughat has once again proved this.
Recently the Uttar Pradesh government released a tourism brochure ‘Hamari Sanskritik Virasat’ (Our Cultural Heritage) incorporated in the 63-page annual budget for 2017-2018 speech which consists of the important tourist places in the state. It is also to be noted that, after the release of this booklet, it was spoken as a controversy since it didn’t include the famous Taj Mahal in it. It has been reported that, this statue construction proposal is a part of the state tourism program called “Navya Ayodhya” in temple town Ayodhya to promote religious tourism. The statue will be built at Saryughat in Ayodhya, close to the disputed Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid site. This will be done after the clearance from the National Green Tribunal, according to a report released from Raj Bhavan. The state is also about to ask NOC from NGT (National Green Tribunal) for it.
“Yes, there is a proposal for a Ram statue in Ayodhya. It is at a conceptual stage right now, there are many other proposals for different tourist destinations across Uttar Pradesh and it is one of them. If you go to Bali in Indonesia, you will find many such statues and our idea is to boost tourism in the state,” said Principal Secretary (Tourism), Awasthi.
The proposed statue of Lord Rama is part of a larger integrated development plan for Ayodhya. For which, the Yogi Adityanath’s government has sent a detailed project report of Rs 195.89 crore to the Union Tourism Ministry, which has provided Rs 133.70 crore to the state so far. A report said that the height of the statue will be around 100 metre but it is not finalised. It is stated that, the statue will be built at an estimation of about Rs 330 crore.
The statue is one of the many initiatives proposed under the Ayodhya redevelopment plan.
One more notable thing is that already a grand temple worth Rs. 30 crore is going to be built in the honour of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Meerut district of the same state. The temple would be built in the Sardhana area of Meerut where a 100-foot statue of Modi would be installed.
The state and central governments should change their priorities by taking the development and welfare of the people as the primary concern. Rather than promoting the religious aspects of the state and the country which is not completely bad if done considering them as secondary.