India has unveiled the world's tallest statue, which cost £330 million. The giant bronze statue, known as the Statue of Unity, is almost twice the height of the Statue of Liberty in New York, making it the tallest in the world. It resembles Sardar Patel, who is known as one of the heroes of India's independence movement.
Having had its grand unveiling on Wednesday, it took 3,500 workers four years to construct the statue - which stands on a bend of the Narmada river in Gujarat, the home state of India's prime minister Narendra Modi. Tribal chiefs also say that the project involved a land-grab that affected 72 nearby villages, which forced thousands out of their homes.
British Conservative MPs have recently condemned the construction, after official figures revealed that Britain donated over £1 billion to India while the country was spending £330 million on the build, the Daily Mail reports.
Britain's foreign aid was spent on projects that ranged from improving women's rights through to funding solar panels and investment in low-carbon transport options.
Tory MP Peter Bone said: "To take £1.1 billion in aid from us and then at the same time spend £330 million on a statue is a total nonsense and it is the sort of thing that drives people mad.
"What it proves is that we should not be giving money to India. It is up to them how they spend their money but if they can afford this statue, then it is clearly a country we should not need to be giving aid to."
In 2012, Britain's aid minister at the time, Andrew Mitchell, announced that the main aid programme to India would come to an end in 2015, but money has continued to go to projects in the country since then.
The Department for International Development has said it ended 'traditional aid' to India in 2015, but it is still funding projects that can help climate change or boost the country's economy.
A spokesman added: "The UK now provides world-leading expertise and private investment - while generating a return for the UK - to boost prosperity, create jobs and open up markets, which is firmly in our interests."
Some people on social media have defended the statue, saying that it will help boost tourism and put the area on the map.
One person wrote: "1st thing ppl will blabber we don't need statue we need education this that bla bla.. So 1 simple answer for all those: This place will become one of the tourist place in India, which will not only creates tourism in state but many in and around ppl will get gd business income."
Another person added: "Statue of Unity will generate many employment opportunities. The project has huge potential for tourism companies all over India."
Someone else also compared it to Rio de Janeiro's Christ the Redeemer statue in Brazil, which has become one of the world's most famous landmarks.
Featured Image Credit: PA