The 21.3 feet tall bronze replica of our national emblem weighing 9,500 kg set atop the new Parliament building which was unveiled by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 11 July has been mired in the controversy again.
The Opposition had criticized Narendra Modi about the unveiling ceremony which had Hindu rituals for inauguration involved. Also, unveiling by the Prime Minister with Lok Sabha Speaker in the background was pointed out as gross constitutional impropriety.
The Constitution very clearly makes distinction between three wings of democracy – executive, legislative and judiciary. The Prime Minister has trespassed his boundaries by holding centerstage at the ceremony concerning the Parliament, the backbiters said. The opposition also criticized the government for making the ceremony a one-man show to panegyrize the current Prime Minister.
The latest objections touches even more serious matter where the opposition blames that the replica of national emblem is an aesthetically distorted version of the original created to align with the whims of the incumbent government’s idea of “New India”
The opposition indicate that the lions on the original Sarnath capital has benign look whereas the replica shows the lions as “ferocious”, “aggressive”, “muscular” , “snarling” “disproportionate” and in the words of RJD ” with man-eater tendency”. Someone said it looked as if the lion are on steroids.
The oppsition has cried foul claiming that the “make over’ of the original sculpture called Ashoka pillar found at Sarnath in Uttar Prades It was adopted as the National Emblem on first republic day of India and figures on all official seals as official insignia of the sovereign state of India.
Erected on the orders of Emperor Ashoka, in about 250 BCE during his rule over the Maurya Empire, the 7 feet sculpture made from single block of polished sandstone has a galloping horse on the left and a bull, separated by the Ashoka Chakra in the circular base on which the four Indian lions are standing back to back. Seen from other angle, an elephant and a lion occupies the other place on the circular base. Our national moto, a quote from Mandukya Upanishad ‘Satyameva Jayate’( Truth Alone Triumph) is written in Devnagiri script below the Lion Capital in the national emblem.
The BJP has refuted the insinuation of the opposition saying that it does not understand the ” sense of proportion and perspective” . The original structure is barely three feet whereas the replica is seven times bigger. The Minister Hardeep Singh Puri defended the structure saying the beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The BJP said that one needs to appreciate the impact of angle, height and scale when comparing the two structure.