The Karnataka government has decided to install a 30-ft bronze statue of Goddess Bhuvaneshwari, considered to be the reigning deity of Kannada identity, in Bengaluru.
Kannada and Culture Minister V Sunil Kumar has approved the statue project in half-acre land at Kalagrama in the Jnanabharathi campus here, which is estimated to cost Rs two crore.
The design of the statue will be as per expert advice, and the Karnataka Shilpakala Academy has been tasked with installing the statue.
The statue will stand atop a 10-foot grand platform, and it will bear design elements depicting the state’s cultural glory.
This is the first time in the state’s history, the mammoth statue dedicated to Goddess Bhuvaneshwari is being installed under the aegis of the government.
”The statue of Kannada Taayi (mother Kannada) Bhuvaneshwari has not been installed anywhere so far by the government. So we have taken this decision. I have instructed officials to complete the statue construction work within three months,” Kumar said in a statement.
There are idols and memorial statues dedicated to several personalities and social reformers in the state, and no government had so far built a statue for the goddess of Kannada, he stated.
Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai will flag off the project in November. The first day of November month is celebrated as ‘Kannada Rajyotsava’ (state formation day).
Kumar at a meeting of department officials held on Monday directed officials that the statue and its site should be ready by Sankranthi next (in January).
Once the statue comes up at the site, the government plans to promote the Kalagrama as a tourist destination.
The Minister has directed officials to draw up daily programmes that can be organised at the Kalagrama auditorium.
The move by the government is seen as an attempt by the ruling BJP to project its pro-Kannada identity image, ahead of the Assembly polls next year.
It is to be noted that the state government is installing a 108-ft statue of Bengaluru founder Kempegowda, who was a 16th century chieftain under the Vijayanagara Empire, on a 23-acre space near the Kempegowda International Airport at Devanahalli. The statue is expected to be ready this year.