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PM unveils 12-ft statute of Adi Shankara in Kedarnath

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Prasanna D Zore
Last updated on: November 05, 2021 19:20 IST
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The decade belongs to Uttarakhand, there will be unprecedented boost to connectivity in the region in the coming years and migration of people from the hills will stop, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday.

IMAGE: Prime Minister Narendra Modi ianugurates Adi Shankaracharya Samadhi and unveils the statue of Shri Adi Shankaracharya, in Kedarnath, Uttarakhand, on Friday, November 5, 2021. Photograph: Press Information Bureau of India

He was addressing a large gathering of teerth-purohits and devotees at the Kedarnath temple after unveiling a 12-foot statue of Adi Guru Shankaracharya at the seer's rebuilt samadhi.

The prime minister sat at the foot of the statue for a while after unveiling it and then proceeded to talk a walk around Kedarpuri to review the reconstruction work carried out over the last few years.


Modi said he was at a loss of words to describe what he felt while he was sitting before the statue.

"Some experiences are so sublime that words are not enough to describe them," he added.

The energy of the eighth century philosopher will continue to drive the country on the path of development for thousands of years, Modi said.

The prime minister reached Kedarnath from Dehradun in the morning and offered prayers at the Shiva temple.

After the prayers, he walked to the 'Bheem Shila' behind the temple.

The huge rock had rolled down the mountains during the June 2013 deluge and stopped right behind the temple, and is believed to have protected it from the disaster.

Work on the Shankaracharya statue, weighing around 35 tonnes, had begun in 2019.

Its unveiling was streamed live at 12 jyotirlingas, four mutts or monasteries established by the eighth century seer, his birth place and a number of prominent temples across the country.

Modi also inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of a slew of reconstruction projects worth over Rs 400 crore at Kedarpuri.

He said the rebuilding work after the 2013 deluge seemed impossible in the beginning but his faith in Baba Kedar and experience of rebuilding earthquake-hit Kutch as the Gujarat chief minister made him believe it was possible.

IMAGE: Modi unveils the statue of Shri Adi Shankaracharya. Photograph: ANI Photo

The work done in Kedarpuri will make pilgrimage to the Himalayan temple smoother, besides making the lives of teerth-purohits living there easier, Modi added.

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami and Governor Lt Gen Gurmit Singh (retd) were also in Kedarnath along with the PM, whose visit came a day ahead of the Himalayan temple's closure for winter on Saturday.

Modi was received at the Dehradun airport in the morning by the governor and the chief minister and his cabinet colleagues Subodh Uniyal and Ganesh Joshi, besides Assembly Speaker Premchand Aggarwal.

Kedarpuri reconstruction is considered the prime minister's dream project whose progress is reviewed personally by him at regular intervals.


'Moment of joy' for Mysuru sculptor

Months of hard work finally paid off for Arun Yogiraj from Mysuru as Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled the grand statue of Adiguru Shankaracharya at Kedarnath in Uttarakhand on Friday.

'It's a moment of joy for us. After nine months of toil for at least 14 hours a day, we completed the statue of Shankaracharya, which Prime Minister Modi inaugurated at Kedarnath,' Yogiraj told PTI.

After completing his MBA, the 37-year old sculptor got a lucrative job but resigned soon after to take up his traditional work.

Yogiraj said when the government decided to install the Shankaracharya statue, it had invited models from sculptors from across the country.

'My model was finally selected and since then the Prime Minister's office was personally monitoring the progress,' the sculptor said.

He also said that he selected the black granite rock from HD Kote in Mysuru and worked on it with a team of seven people.

According to him, the 12 feet tall statue weighs about 28 tonnes.

After it was completed in July, it was taken to Uttarakhand.

Yogiraj said the statue was then airlifted by Chinook helicopter to the designated place.

He was supposed to be in Kedarnath but due to a tragedy in the family, he had to return home a week ago.

The sculptor said he is constructing a 25-ft tall Anjaneya statue at Chunchanakatte in Mysuru district and a Shiva statue in another location.

'I have also taken up the construction of a temple in Malaysia as well as at Kanakapura in Ramanagara district,' Yogiraj added.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Prasanna D Zore© Copyright 2022 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
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