Hitesh Chavda, Rajpipla: As the state gears up for the inauguration of the world’s biggest statue, “Statue of Unity” on Wednesday, the local administration is on their toes, rushing to repair and construct roads in Bharuch and Rajpipla for the past couple of days. With not even 24 hours remaining for the inauguration, to be done by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, broken roads are still being repaired, and kachcha roads are being converted into tarred, pucca roads. The road that led to Rajpipla from Bharuch has always been dusty and riddled with potholes, but with several high profile personalities scheduled to visit Kevadiya Colony, the road is being repaired.

All this is an attempt to make visitors think that the administration has constructed road even in the Adivasi areas of the state. While all the top government officials from the state capital Gandhinagar have already landed in Rajpipla, the street right outside the city collector’s office was being re-carpeted. One wonders if regular VIP visits would ensure the administration does its job regularly.

Bharat Vasava, a tea vendor in Rajpipla says, “We’ve all seen Narendra Modi and Vijay Rupani in person, then what is the need for all these huge hoardings? It is good that they built a statue, but it would be great if they keep one of the doors of the dam open, so that the water level in the wells of the nearby villages remains intact.” While Vasava is happy that the dusty streets are being repaired, but he’s worried if he’d be allowed to run his stall here.

He further added that the traders in Rajpipla will keep their shops shut in solidarity with the ‘bandh’ announced by the Adivasi community on Wednesday.

The Statue of Unity is a 182-metre tall statue of independent India’s first home minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. He’s also called the Loh Purush or Iron Man of India.