Narendra Modi pays floral tribute to Mahatma Gandhi

Written by PTI | Washington | Updated: Oct 1 2014, 01:42am hrs
Like in New York, frenzied Indian-American crowds followed Prime Minister Narendra Modi as he paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi on the last day of his five-day visit to the US.

Waving Indian flags and chanting 'Modi, Modi', scores of Indian-Americans greeted him as he arrived at the Dupont Circle where the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had inaugurated the statue on September 16, 2000.

The Prime Minister offered floral tributes at the statue and spent around 15 minutes at the site just outside the Indian Embassy on Lexington Avenue.

He also interacted with the Indian-Americans who were waiting there from early morning to catch a glimpse of him.

Though their numbers were not anywhere near what was seen in New York, the clamour was alike. Many of those who gathered hailed Modi as a great leader who has removed the negativity of the last ten years and brought in positive vibes.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj also offered floral tributes. Later, Modi posed for photographs outside the Indian Embassy gate before going inside.

The Gandhi statue was sculpted by Gautam Pal who had created several outstanding bronzes of Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Rabindranath Tagore and other leading personalities.

The sculpture of Mahatma Gandhi is cast in bronze as a statue to a height of 8 feet 8 inches. It shows Gandhi in stride, as a leader and man of action evoking memories of his 1930 protest march against salt-tax.

The pedestal for the statue is a block of new Imperial Red also known as Ruby Red.

This particular block was excavated from a quarry in Ilkal in Karnataka. It was fabricated and dressed in Hosur, Tamil Nadu.