World’s second biggest sitting statue coming up near Hyderabad

Work is on in full swing for the Samatha Murthy Spoorthi Kendra on the outskirts of Hyderabad.   | Photo Credit: G. Ramakrishna

A complex with 108 temples and a towering 216-feet-high sitting statue of 10th century Bhakti saint Ramanuja is taking shape on the outskirts of Hyderabad.

Called the Statue of Equality as a tribute to Ramanujacharya’s philosophy and teachings, the gigantic structure will mark the beginning of the 1000th birth anniversary celebrations of the religious guru, planned by Chinna Jeeyar Swamy and his religious trust.

“The first phase of the project involving the statue will be ready by November next year and costs about Rs. 250 crore, which has come in the form of donations. The whole project, including the temple complex and the digital sound and light show at the base of the statue, is estimated to cost Rs. 1,000 crore,” said CEO of the project S.M. Balasubramanyam, who is a former head of the Endowments Department.

At Muchintal village

As workers pour concrete into the base of the structure, which is called the bhadrapeeta, a glimpse of the grandeur and magnificence of the project can be seen from the 54-feet high multi-storied structure on which the statue will come up in Muchintal village, a few miles from the Hyderabad International Airport at Shamshabad.

“The statue and the temple complex is the brainchild of Chinna Jeeyar Swamy. It will be the second highest sitting statue in the world [the tallest is the Great Buddha in Thailand at 302 ft]. From the ground to the tip of the staff, it is going to be 216 feet,” informs Yellapragada Suryanarayana of the trust which is executing the project.

The base of three-storied building is ready. “The containers with the pieces for the statue are reaching the Chennai port from China in the next few days and we have created accommodation and working space for about 60 specialist Chinese workers, engineers and welders who will assemble the statue,” says Mr. Suryanarayana.

700 tonnes of panchaloha

“We created a 3D digital scaled image, which was supervised by Chinna Jeeyar Swamy to the minutest detail. This was sent to Aerosun Corporation and they have used it to create 1,500 pieces that can be assembled into the statue. The biggest and the heaviest segment is the face which is a 24 ft by 24 ft piece. We have been promised that there will be no welding marks on the statue,” says sthapathi Prasad, who is supervising the work with adherence to spiritual traditions.

Nanjing-based Aerosun Corporation, which has an Art Statue Division, has shaped 700 tonnes of panchaloha into the gigantic statue of the Bhakti saint, right down to the sagging ear-lobes. The statue will be sited on a lotus held up by 36 massive elephants. Within the statue will be a concrete core around which will be the panchaloha sheet, varying in thickness between 10 mm and 20 mm.

Visible from flights

“The statue will be visible from the flights landing and taking off from Shamshabad Airport. We are expecting a similar announcement like the one made in the air [when flights have a view] near Amritsar on the Golden Temple,” says Mr. Suryanarayana.

It is a perfect message for the egalitarian seer Ramanuja, who preached that spiritual bliss is available for all human souls irrespective of their birth.

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Printable version | Nov 26, 2020 11:14:37 PM |

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