Spend money on healthcare, not installation of statues, say Patiala residents

Spend money on healthcare, not installation of statues, say Patiala residents

A seven-foot-tall statue of Shaheed Udham Singh at Sanaur Chowk. Tribune photo

Ravneet Singh

Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 9

City residents have alleged there is politics behind installation of statue after another statue at Bari Nadi on the Patiala-Sanaur road here. Sanaur Chowk will now be renamed Shaheed Udham Singh Chowk after widening and completion of work.

A seven feet tall life-size statue of Shaheed Udham Singh will be installed at Sanaur Chowk. The city already has statues of personalities, including Mahatma Gandhi, Bhagat Singh, former Chief Minister Beant Singh, Sewa Singh Thikriwala and others. Local leaders, however, rejected such statements.

The Sanaur Panchayat Samiti chairman, Ashwani Batta, said,

“The statue has been installed on demand of the general public and the Kamboj community. Harinder Pal Singh Harry Mann had assured people last year that the chowk will be widened and the statue will be installed here.”

“The work is being carried out in collaboration with Congress leaders, contributions from the general public and help from the Public Works Department (PWD) and the Municipal Corporation,” he added.

“An amount of Rs9 lakh is being spent on the installation of statue. Congress leaders in the area and the Kamboj community have contributed Rs6 lakh. The remaining amount will be sourced through public contributions. The marble statue weighs 11 kg,” he said.

“The statue will be unveiled by Member Parliament Preneet Kaur on July 31, observed as Udham Singh’s martyrdom day,” he added.

Raminder Shah, an area resident, said, “These noble souls are urging people not to waste money on their statues and rather starting a healthcare facility with this amount. Their name on a hospital will give them more respect than a statue.”

Another resident said, ‘Ethe statue la k ki kerna. Jehda ve support kar rhea o ik var mere naal chal ke dekhe ki Shaheed de parivar da aj ki haal hai. Kurbaniya kon ker gea te ohna de naam te faida leader chakki firde hai’ (What is the need of a statue here? Those, who support its installation, should come with me and see the condition of the family of the Shaheed (martyr). They (martyrs) laid their life and leaders are gaining benefits from it.)

When questioned about comments of the public on politics, Harinder Pal Singh Harry Mann said, “There is no politics involved in installation of statue. The development is solely because of years’ long pending demands of residents. We had sought permission from the MC and the PWD in this regard, which was granted.”

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