The newly-unveiled Statue of Unity is giving some serious competition to the IKEA Hyderabad store!
According to visitor records, more than 27,000 people visited Gujarat’s Statue of Unity in the Narmada district. This is actually more than the average daily footfall of 20-25,000 clocked by the famous IKEA store in Hyderabad. And considering that people spend more per head at the Statue (Rs 316.67 on average, basing averages on a family of two adults and one child) than at IKEA (the highest selling item at IKEA Hyderabad is the ‘Kalas’ 6-piece Spoon set at Rs 15!), it was definitely a more profitable turnout!
Factors surrounding high footfall at the Statue of Unity
The figure of 27,000 people is also the highest ever recorded so far, since the time Indian PM Narendra Modi unveiled the statue on October 31, 2018.
In order to match the rising demand of visitors, the state has increased the number of buses that ferry visitors from the parking lot to the statue, from 15 to 40. The government has also taken a decision to mark the statue ‘closed for maintenance’ every Monday of the week. Expecting the number of visitors to go up even more on Sunday, the district collector of Narmada Mr RS Ninama has speculated that the steep rise in interest was most likely due to the post-Diwali family visit frenzy. Some additional interest was also attributed to the Gujarati New Year celebrations, which were on the day right after Diwali.
Specifications & Limitations at the Statue of Unity
Located on an islet on the Sardar Sarovar Dam in Kevadiya, the Statue of Unity has been the subject of public interest and tourism speculation, since the time its development was first announced. However – In terms of infrastructure, the 182-meter long statue has only two lifts that can accommodate only up to 5,000 people in a single day, in order to take them (visitors) to the observation deck (the viewing gallery). The government is also issuing notices urging people to plan their visits keeping in mind the structural limits of the statue. Ticket prices for visitors have been capped at Rs 350 for adults and Rs 200 for children aged between 3 and 15.
Source: PTI, India.com