India has added another feather to its caps on Wednesday by inaugurating Statue of Unity, which is the new world's tallest statue with 597 feet (182 metres) of height. Located on the river island called Sadhu Bet facing the Narmada Dam in Gujarat, the monument is dedicated to Indian independence movement leader Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the gigantic statue on the 143rd birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhai Patel. Designed by Padma Bhushan winning sculptor Ram V Sutar, the statue was commissioned in 2013 and iron for the construction was procured from around the country to commemorate the 'Iron Man of India'.
While the Statue of Unity is the new entrant in the world's tallest statues list, let's take a look at the other four statues that make the top 5 list.
2. Spring Temple Buddha in China - 420 feet (128 metres)
Located in the Zhaocun township of Lushan County, Henan, China, the Spring Temple Buddha depicting Vairocana Buddha was built during 1997-2008. When pedestal/building at the bottom is added, the statue has a total height of 502 ft (153 metres). The project was worth $55 million, of which nearly $18 million was spent on constructing the statue.
3. Laykyun Sekkya in Myanmar - 380 feet (116 metres)
Located in the village of Khatakan Taung, near Monywa, Myanmar, the construction of Laykyun Sekkyabegan was in 1996 and completed on February 21, 2008. The statue of Buddha stands on a 44 feet (13.5 metres) throne. Interestingly, it has 31 floors, referring to the 31 realms of the life cycle according to Buddhist teaching.
4. Ushiku Daibutsu in Japan - 330 feet (100 metres)
Again a statue of Buddha, Ushiku Daibutsu is located in the Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan. Completed in 1993, Ushiku Daibutsu has a total height of 390 feet (120 metres) when 10 m (33 ft) base and 10m lotus platform included. It was the record holder for being the tallest statue in the world from 1993–2002. The statue has been built to commemorate the birth of Shinran, founder of the Jodo Shinshu or "True Pure Land School" of Buddhism.
5. Statue of Liberty in USA - 305 feet (93 metres)
Situated at Liberty Island in New York Harbor, Statue of Liberty is the most famous in the top five. America's iconic statue is a gift from the people of France to the people of the United States. The copper statue has a height of 305 feet (93 metres) and it was inaugurated on October 18, 1886.
Statue of Liberty was designed by French sculptor Frederic Auguste Bartholdi and built by Gustave Eiffel. The statue is a figure of a robed woman representing Libertas, a Roman liberty goddess.
Many new statues in construction to beat Statue of Unity
Though the Statue of Unity has been crowned as the world's tallest statue, retaining the title will be a tough task as there are many statues under construction around the world raising the bar higher. The tallest one among them is the statue 17th-century warrior king, Shivaji, expected to come off at the coast of Mumbai. The proposed statute is expected to be 696-feet high and it has been tentatively set for inauguration in 2021. It will surpass the Statue of Unity as the world's tallest.