I always complain that after independence Indians didn’t invest much in building monuments. I’m not talking about public sector industries and big dams, I’m talking about statues and buildings, and even bridges. You go to any moderately developed country and you will notice that they pay a lot of attention to aesthetics. So on bridges they have finely carved statues of mythological creatures, historical figures and intricate patterns. Even the streetlights are something to behold. They have buildings that glorify their traditions. The basic point is, when they construct something, the passion shows through. What do we have?
We couldn’t even build a new Rashtrapati Bhawan. Most of our ministers, proudly live in the Lutyen’s Delhi. The India Gate, Gateway of India, they were all built by the British. Just imagine, the British could build something that would later on turn into a national monument, just for a singular visit by their Imperial ruler, and we couldn’t even build a lousy monument to dedicate to our independence. Every 15th of August, the tricolor is unfurled from the ramparts of a fort built by the Muslim invaders. And don’t give the bullshit of not having enough money. India always has more than enough money when it comes to running scams and welfare schemes for garnering votes.
Most of our buildings and bridges represent the dull, communist era. They are uninspiring gray, or yellow cubicle structures built just for the purpose of use. Need a bridge? There you have it. Need a building? There, you have it. No attention is given to how to make the constructions beautiful.
Why does it matter? Awe-inspiring constructions give a sense of pride to the people of the city or the country. That is why when Mayawati built that monstrosity of the 685-crore Rashtriya Dalit Prerna Sthal I was totally in favor of it. One reason was, most of our monuments are named after the Gandhi family (I’m not talking about Mahatma Gandhi) and the second was, we definitely require monuments and large-scale constructions that represent our pride. Of course what eventually Mayawati built was an eyesore and maybe it was primarily built to swindle a couple of 100 crores but the philosophy behind it totally makes sense.
Monuments play an important role for civilizations provided they are made for people and not to glorify particular families. That is why among the first things that Sardar Patel did after India got independence was get the Somnath temple in Gujarat restored (although the restoration didn’t complete during his lifetime).
Popular construction drives rekindle passion among the masses. Some may call it a communal agenda, but just the promise of a Ram Temple in Ayodhya could motivate the masses to turn the BJP into a national party.
The people of the country need something like that and this is why the proposed construction of Sardar Patel’s statue by Narendra Modi is a step in the right direction. Since Modi always exhorts the countrymen and women to think big, being true to his philosophy, he wants the statute to be the tallest in the world, and for that, he is going to collect iron from more than 6000 villages across India. It is a very wise move to bring people from all over India under a single goal. India needs many such statues, buildings, bridges, temples and why not, even forts.
The Congress and its sympathizers of course are squirming with unease. These morons cannot think beyond shortsighted politics. They complain why Narendra Modi is building the statue of a congressman. By saying this, these stupid fellows are publicly accepting that none of their leaders can have a pan India appeal.