Palike to install Kuvempu statue sans govt's approval

Statue to be unveiled at the Freedom Park on February 20

The Palike is all set to unveil a nine-and-half-foot copper statue of noted Kannada poet and Jnanapith awardee at the Freedom Park in the City on February 20. The statue has already been installed at the designated spot and is presently under wraps. 

The BBMP’s move, however, is not without its share of controversies. According to officials, while the installation of the statue - costing Rs 16 lakh - itself has been disputed due to its location, the Palike is said to have failed to get the State government’s nod for the proposal. 

“The proposal seems to have come from MLA Ashwathnarayana, who had insisted on installing the statue in Bangalore. Due to his lobbying, the statue is being installed,”said Palike sources.

Sources said that for the installation of any statue, the BBMP has to first approve the location and then send the proposal to the State government. “However, in this case, the proposal was never sent to the government,” the sources said.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Deputy Mayor S Harish said that since the BBMP Council had passed a resolution for the installation of the statue, the proposal was not sent to the State government. “Two months ago, the Palike had passed a resolution to install the statue in the City. We had provided the Kannada Sahitya Parishat five locations to choose from. The Freedom Park was finalised,” he said.

District in-charge for the Kannada Sahitya Parishat, Ramegowda, said that the Parishat zeroed in on Freedom Park due to the contributions of Kuvempu to the freedom struggle. 

“Kuvempu was one of the first to give a clarion call to people of Karnataka to join the struggle for freedom, through his poems. Hence, Freedom Park was chosen,” he told Deccan Herald.G S Shivarudrappa, noted poet, will be present at the function to unveil the statue. The Parishat will hold a day-long event at the Park to commemorate Kuvempu’s contributions to the society. 

Panel discussions, dance programme, music concerts based on his poems and an exhibition of his writings in Kannada newspapers will be part of the event. 

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