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HomeHeadline newsModi launches master plan for Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram

Modi launches master plan for Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram

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Indian prime minister Modi inaugurated the ₹1200 crore Gandhi Ashram Memorial masterplan on the anniversary of the historic Dandi Yatra in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.

During the event, he stressed the significance of preserving the country’s heritage, stating that a nation failing to cherish its heritage jeopardises its future.

“The Sabarmati Ashram has become a pilgrimage not only for our freedom movement but also for Viksit Bharat (developed India). Today, Bapu’s (Mahatma Gandhi) vision is giving a clear direction to our country for a bright future. The governments formed after independence had neither the mentality nor the political will to save such heritage of the country,” he said.

The Sabarmati Ashram located on the banks of the river Sabarmati holds a significance in the Mahatma Gandhi’s war of Indian independence. The famous salt march, started in 1915 against the British rule was started from here which ended in a place called Dandi in the coastal area of the state.

The redevelopment of the Sabarmati Ashram, located in the centre of the city of Ahmedabad costs around ₹1200 crores which includes the expanding of existing five acre area to 55 acres along with renovation of the 36 buildings.

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british-pm-boris-johnson-sabarmati-ashram
On April 21, 2022, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited Sabarmati Ashram,
Ahmedabad, India (Photo credit: Getty images)

The master plan includes conservation of 20 old buildings and restoration of 12, which eventually leads to preserving the legacy of the ashram.

The state government has formed the Mahatma Gandhi Sabarmati Ashram Memorial Trust to oversee the project and also facilitated relocation to approximately 250 families residing within the premises of the ashram.

Modi expressed a desire to maintain traditional construction methods by focusing on the old and rich heritage of India. He emphasised the importance of understanding Gandhi’s role in shaping the nation’s destiny and announced efforts to promote natural farming, inspired by Gandhi’s vision of self-reliant villages.

Modi reiterated Gandhi’s dream of ‘gram swaraj’ and a self-reliant India, aligning it with his government’s initiatives like ‘Vocal for Local’ and Atmanirbhar Bharat (self-reliant India). He proudly shared that nine lakh farmers in Gujarat embraced natural farming, saving three lakh tonnes of urea.

Modi acknowledged the empowerment of over 1 crore women in self-help groups, labeling them as “lakhpati didis.” He expressed his ambition to create three crore such empowered women in the future.

shinzo-abe-japan-sabarmati-ashram
On September 13, 2017, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
, accompanied by his wife Akie Abe, visited the Sabarmati Ashram. (Photo
credit: Getty images)

Reflecting on poverty reduction, the Prime Minister claimed that 25 crore people emerged from poverty over the last decade, attributing the success to government policies. He affirmed that Mahatma Gandhi would bless these achievements.

Drawing parallels between India’s current achievements and Mahatma Gandhi’s ideals, Modi stated that the Sabarmati Ashram remains a source of inspiration.

He cited the development of Kashi Dham in Varanasi, the Ram temple expansion project in Ayodhya, and the rejuvenation of Lord Krishna’s Dwarka as examples of the government’s commitment to heritage and religious sites.

Modi praised the families residing within the Sabarmati Ashram for their role in facilitating its expansion. He emphasised the ongoing efforts to preserve and enhance heritage sites across the country, aligning with the government’s vision for a developed and culturally rich India.

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