At 221 metres, it would be the tallest statue in the world and will exceed the height of the Statue of Unity by 38 metres. The Statue of Unity, dedicated to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in October last year.
“We have identified land for the Lord Ram statue project and forwarded an official intimation in this regard to the tourism department,” Ayodhya district magistrate Anuj Jha told Business Standard, adding the district administration would now act according to directives.
Since the model code of conduct for the ongoing Lok Sabha elections is in force, the process of land acquisition or fixing the rate of compensation for the identified land has not been initiated, he said.
In November 2018, UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath had finalised a blueprint for the proposed bronze statue. A statue of Lord Ram, measuring 151 metres in height, would stand atop a pedestal of 50 metres -- which would be under a 20-metre high classical umbrella hood -- thus making the edifice 221 metre high. The design depicts Ram holding a metal bow and an arrow in his left and right arms, respectively.
The project is likely to be modelled on the Statue of Unity, which has incorporated multifarious tourist attractions around the mega structure, thus turning the Narmada district of Gujarat into a tourism hot spot.
According to the proposal, the pedestal would house a state-of-the-art museum that would narrate Ayodhya's history and its connection with the mythical pantheons, especially Lord Ram, as detailed in Ramayan.
In October 2017, the Yogi Adityanath government had announced that it would build a 100-metre statue of Ram near the banks of Saryu and also solicited funds from both private and public sectors under corporate social responsibility (CSR) for state tourism projects.
The Statue of Unity in Gujarat, too, was a recipient of CSR funding from public sector enterprises.
Earlier, the state had estimated that the two projects in Ayodhya would cost Rs 1,000 crore. However, since the height of the statue has been more than doubled to 221 metres, the cost is likely to increase. The government would develop a modern township for the New Ayodhya project.