Udayavni Special

Kempegowda’s 80-foot statue to be installed in int’l airport


PTI, Jan 9, 2020, 10:18 AM IST

Bengaluru: An 80-foot tall statue of city’s founder Kempegowda will be installed at the premises of the international airport here that is named after him, where a theme park will also be developed in 23 acres, the Karnataka government said on Wednesday.

The government also said it has decided to establish an art and craft village at Roerich and Devikarani estate near here and has identified land for the film city to come up in Bengaluru.

These details were given by Deputy Chief Minister C N Ashwathnarayan, who chaired meetings on all the three subjects with officials and stakeholders here, following instructions from Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa.

Stating that Kempegowda Development Authority meeting was held as per the chief minister’s directions, Ashwathnarayan said a detailed discussion was held regarding statue of Kempegowda at the airport and restoration of 46 sites that were developed by the city’s founder then.

“At the premises of the international airport named after Kempegowda, a theme park will be developed in 23 acres, where place has been identified to install an 80 ft statue of him,” the deputy chief minister said.

He said a few famous companies which participated in the meeting discussed the design and ideas of the statue and also plan has been prepared regarding the work that need to be taken up at 46 sites.

“After things are finalized, the plan, the amount to be spent, the company that will design the project, who will be the sculptor- all these things will be informed,” a statement from Ashwathnarayan’s office quoted him as saying.

Kempegowda, referred as “Nadaprabhu”, was a feudatory ruler under the erstwhile Vijayanagara Empire who founded Bengaluru in 1537.

He is revered by the Vokkaliga community that is dominant in Old Mysuru and other parts of southern Karnataka.

Yediyurappa in September had said that to make Kempegowda “immortal”, the government has decided to reconstitute the Kempegowda Development Authority, and release Rs 100 crore to it.

The move is being seen as an attempt by the BJP to reach out to the dominant Vokkaliga community.

Stating that Roerich and Devikarani estate here was a place for cinema, art, culture and spiritualism, Ashwathnarayan said it has been decided to establish an art and craft village there with an intention to develop the estate as a famous cultural centre.

Russian painter Svetoslav Roerich and his wife, yesteryear heroine Devikarani had made the estate on the outskirts of the city their home.

While Roerich died in 1993, Devikarani breathed her last the following year.

Yediyurappa had last year said the government has plans to come up with a film city at Roerich Estate. However, some environmentalists had opposed the move, citing disturbing biodiversity as the reason.

The estate is part of the elephant corridor between Bannerghatta and Savandurga.

Ashwathnarayan on Wednesday said land has been identified to set up the film city in Bengaluru, and after discussion with the Chief Minister it will be finalized.

Noting that the government wants to set up a film city that is different from the ones across the world, he said “We want it to have facilities for animation, production and post production.

Discussions have happened on how it should complement the tourism sector, the area in which it will be set up, and the details will be shared soon.”

Previous governments had planned to set up the film city at Mysuru and Ramanagara.

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