Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday flagged off eight trains connecting different regions of the country to Kevadiya with an aim to facilitate seamless connectivity to the Statue of Unity in Gujarat.
Addressing the ceremony after he flagged off eight trains connecting different regions of the country to Kevadiya, Prime Minister said now more tourists coming to see the Statue of Unity than the Statue of Liberty.
"This connectivity will be beneficial for tourists coming to see the Statue of Unity but it will also help in changing the lives of the tribal community of Kevadiya. It will bring new opportunities for job and self-employment," he said.
PM Modi noted that it is probably for the first time in the history of railways that so many trains have been flagged for the same place from different corners of the country.
"The identity of Kevadiya is from the world's tallest statue of Sardar Patel, who gave the mantra of one nation, best nation (Ek Bharat-Shreshtha Bharat)... After the inauguration, nearly 50 lakh people have come to see the Statue of Unity," he added.
The eight trains started for Kevadiya aim to facilitate seamless connectivity to the Statue of Unity in Gujarat.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and Union Railways Minister Piyush Goyal were also present on the occasion.
The trains flagged off include 09103/04 Kevadiya-Varanasi Mahamana Express (Weekly), 02927/28 Dadar-Kevadiya Express (Daily), 09247/48 Ahmedabad-Kevadiya Janshatabdi Express (Daily), 09145/46 Nizamuddin - Kevadia Sampark Kranti Express (Bi-Weekly), 09105/06 Kevadia - Rewa Express (Weekly), 09119/20 Chennai - Kevadia Express (Weekly), 09107/08 Pratapnagar-Kevadia MEMU train (Daily) and 09109/10 Kevadiya-Pratapnagar MEMU train (Daily).
According to the Railway Ministry, the Ahmedabad-Kevadiya Jan Shatabdi Express has been provided with the new-age "Vista-dome tourist coach" which will offer a panoramic view of the skyline.
The Prime Minister inaugurated Dabhoi-Chandod broad gauge railway line, Chandod-Kevadiya new broad gauge railway line, newly electrified Pratapnagar- Kevadiya section and the new station buildings of Dabhoi, Chandod and Kevadiya.
Kevadiya station is India's first railway station with a Green Building Certification. These projects are aimed to boost development and tourism in the region.
Situated near Kevadiya in Gujarat's Narmada district, the 'Statue of Unity' is the world's tallest statue and monumental tribute to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, independent India's first home minister as well as deputy prime minister.
The statue was inaugurated in October 2018 by Prime Minister Modi on the occasion of Patel's 143rd birth anniversary.