Not many takers for Cauvery statue

Not many takers for Cauvery statue

Minister Sa Ra Mahesh says no govt funds will be used.

Tourism Minister Sa Ra Mahesh says the giant statue and amusement park project near Mysuru will be built exclusively with private investment. He told Metrolife a Jaipur architecture firm would execute the project near Mysuru.
Many Bengalureans travel to Mysuru regularly for the weekend, taking touring guests along. We spoke to some to ask how they felt about the project. After Gujarat built a giant statue of Sardar Patel, Karnataka has entered the big-statue race with its proposed Mother Cauvery statue, and that’s not necessarily a good thing, many said.

The government wants to build the statue inside an amusement park similar to Disneyland. The project is estimated to cost Rs 1,200 crore and is spread over 300-400 acres.

The JD(S)-Congress coalition government plans to instal a 125-foot statue of Mother Cauvery atop a museum complex at the Krishnaraja Sagar (KRS) dam park. Cauvery is portrayed as a woman holding a pot with water pouring out of it. A smaller figure of the former king of Mysore, Nalvadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar, has also been planned. He initiated the dam project in 1911, providing electricity, drinking water and irrigation to Mandya district.

So what is the sentiment on the ground? Metrolife finds out.


Gayathri, banking professional: “We lack good roads, drinking water and electricity. If the government has so much money, they should fix these problems instead of building a statue.”


Rashi Nagelia, psychology student: “It is a good attempt to plant the idea of ‘Cauvery Namdu,’ or that the Cauvery is ours. But what’s with the government building statues everywhere?”


Alice Mathew, associate professor, political science, Mount Carmel College: 

“We already have places like Wonderla. Why do we need one more amusement park? Spending on building schools and colleges in remote areas and hiring teachers is better for a nation than building amusement parks.”


Arjun Prakash, mechanical design engineer:

“I’m absolutely against the Cauvery statue project. If we want to show our respect to the river, we need to rejuvenate it so that it can sustain farmers and animals both in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The government first came up with the idea of a steel bridge to loot money, now comes the statue at a cost of Rs 1,200 crore.”

Varun Hemachandran, founder, Talking Earth, community environmental organisation: “The proposal really reveals where the government’s priorities lie. Bengaluru is neck-deep in garbage and we’ll all need to be 100 metres tall just to keep our noses above the stench. So it’s good, the statue reminds us of how tall we need to be to breathe 20 years from now.”


Juveria Fathima, journalism student: “If it serves as a tourist attraction, it will definitely be profitable and create more jobs.”


Project inspired by Disneyland

- Its stated objective is to showcase Karnataka culture and heritage.

- A museum complex, two glass towers overlooking the KRS dam, an indoor stadium and a bandstand are part of the project.   

- The park and statue will be completed in two years.

- A highlight will be a lane showcasing the architectural magnificence of Hampi, Gol Gumbaz, Belur-Halebid, and Somnathpura.


Spot a Bollywood favourite

Brindavan Gardens is the location for many hit Kannada and south Indian film songs. Nee bandu nintaaga, the lovely melody from Kasturi Nivasa, features Rajkumar and Manjula romancing here. The location is also popular among Bollywood directors. Several song sequences have been shot here: ‘Tumhe apna banane ki kasam’ from ‘Sadak’ (1991), ‘Kitna pyara tujhe’ from ‘Raja Hindustani’ (1996), ‘Keh do ki tum’ from ‘Tezaab’ (1988) and ‘Mere naina’ from ‘Mehbooba’ (1976). Besides, a hilarious scene from the movie ‘Padosan’  (1968) was also shot here.

A view of the Brindavan Gardens, abutting the KRS dam, in Srirangapatna taluk, Mandya district.

Brindavan Gardens: what’s special

- Located near Mysuru, it is one of India’s most famous tourist spots.

- It is 143 km from Bengaluru, and a three-hour drive.

- The Krishnaraja Sagar dam is built across the Cauvery, which divides the garden into two parts.

- Primarily a terrace garden, it is spread over 60 acres and it is laid out in the shape of a horseshoe. The slopes are planted with colourful bougainvillaeas and ornamental plants.

- Musical fountains, open spaces, well laid out pathways, illuminated flower beds and ornamental plants characterise this space.

- The gardens are maintained by the Cauvery Niravari Nigama, a government enterprise.