The state cabinet on Tuesday cleared Rs 125 crore towards initial expenditure for the proposed Indu Mill memorial for Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar. The foundation stone laying ceremony for the project will be done by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 4.
After the state cabinet discussed and reviewed the drought situation, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis apprised them about a formal request being sent to the prime minister’s office (PMO) for the foundation stone laying ceremony next month.
Taking in to account the importance of the memorial, Rs 125 crore would be released as the government has already approved the design presented by the firm Shashi Prabhu Associates.
The state government had invited bids for the proposed Indu Mill memorial and as many as 10 bidders had participated for the same. After shortlisting, two firms — Shashi Prabhu Associates and French firm Jakob and MacForlane — were invited for making a presentation before the state cabinet meeting held on August 25.
After the presentation, the cabinet decided that the final call to allot the work would be taken by Fadnavis. Accordingly, the chief minister decided to give the contract to Shahsi Prabhu Associates.
Revenue minister Eknath Khadse informed reporters that the foundation stone would be laid by the prime minister. However, finance minister Sudhir Mungantiwar informed that a request has been sent to the PMO, but there has been no confirmation yet.
The proposed memorial would have a 40-feet tall statue of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar along with a big stupa with 24 ribs denoting dhammachakra. It would also have an interactive library along with light and sound show, meditation hall, parking with a capacity of 400 four wheelers. Prabhu, who is a well-known architect, has assured the government that the proposed memorial would be designed in such a way that green spaces would be abundantly available and the existing ponds as well as 200 trees would not be affected with the construction of around 23,300 square metres at a cost of Rs 425 crore.