Sardar Patel statue to stand 182m tall, then be surpassed in 2021 by Shivaji memorial

India says it will unveil the world’s largest statue next month, depicting the independence leader Sardar Patel.

The Statue of Unity will be unveiled on 31 October
The Statue of Unity will be unveiled on 31 October © Ajit Solanki/AP

However, the reign of the 182-metre structure as record holder could be short-lived, with work due to begin on an even larger statue of a Hindu king off the coast of Mumbai.

The two statues have strong resonance for the Hindu nationalist movement, which has been on the rise in India, and will cost a total of nearly £700m to build.

The Gujarat state chief minister, Vijay Rupani, confirmed the Sardar Patel statue, located about 125 miles (200km) south-east of the state’s commercial capital, Ahmedabad, would be unveiled on 31 October.

The 29.8bn rupee (£314m) Statue of Unity, which Rupani said is being built with iron, water and soil collected from across India, will be about twice the size of New York’s Statue of Liberty.