“India is an old country but a young nation and like the young everywhere, we are impatient. I am young and I too have a dream. I dream of an India – Strong, Independent, Self-reliant, and in the front ranks of the nations of the world in the service of mankind” – Rajiv Gandhi.
Sriperumbudur was a little-known village in the outskirts of Chennai, until the late Prime Minister of India Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by the LTTE here. A memorial was built at the site where Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated, a well-made memorial compared to the many I have visited in my journeys.
The memorial consists of the path that was last taken by the late Prime Minister culminating to the spot where a suicide bomber executed his assassination. At this place is a mural depicting his end, the mural is surrounded by seven large pillars depicting the seven concepts/symbols of Satya, Dharma, Nyaya, Samrudhi, Vigyan, Shanti, and Tyaga.
The Bodhi Tree representing Satya – Truth
The Chakra (wheel) representing Dharma – Natural Law
The Chhatri (Umbrella) representing Nyaya– Justice
The Grass representing Samruddhi– Prosperity
The Star representing Vigyan – Science / Technology
The Lotus representing Shanti – Peace
The Flames representing Tyaga – Sacrifice
The memorial also has one of the biggest flag staffs of India, carrying Indian National Flag.
The memorial has a huge lawn with tree lined pathways
A stone sculpture depicting India’s progress at the memorial.
The mural tries to portray the vision the late Prime Minister had for the country. The artist has placed him in the middle on the sculpture, with figures depicting the rich cultural and natural heritage of India on the right, and figures depicting progress through technological & industrial advancements, on his left.
A flock of birds over his head, depicting peace and harmony in the nation, brings a sense of renewed hope and completes the entire piece.