The “long period of slavery” and indifference made us forget or overlook India’s rich maritime history, the Prime Minister said in his address after reviewing the construction of the complex at Lothal, about 80 km from Ahmedabad. He added that the heritage developed in the country in the last eight years “gives us a glimpse of the vastness of India’s legacy”.
“There are many such tales of our history, which have been forgotten and ways have not been found to preserve them to pass them on to the next generation,” he said. “How much can we learn from those events of history? India’s maritime heritage is also a topic that has been not been talked about much.”
Gandhinagar: The upcoming National Maritime Heritage Complex (NMHC) at Lothal in Gujarat’s Ahmedabad district will serve as a centre for teaching India’s varied maritime history, according to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement on Tuesday.
After reviewing the development of the complex at Lothal, which is around 80 km from Ahmedabad, the prime minister stated that the “long period of slavery” and our complacency caused us to forget or ignore India’s rich maritime past. The heritage created in the nation over the previous eight years, he continued, “gives us a sense of the breadth of India’s past.”
In his address, Modi also highlighted the vast spread of India’s trade and business in ancient times and its relations with every civilisation of the world. “Thousand years of slavery not only broke that tradition but we also grew indifferent towards our heritage and capabilities,” he said. “We forgot that we have great heritage like Lothal and Dholavira that were famous for maritime trade.”
Recalling the time when Kutch in Gujarat flourished as a manufacturing hub for big ships, Modi stressed the commitment of the government to revamp sites of historical significance. “Large ships made in India were sold all over the world. This indifference towards heritage has done a lot of damage to the country,” he said. “This situation needs to be changed.”
“The heritage developed in the country in the last eight years gives us a glimpse of the vastness of India’s legacy,” Modi said, citing the Statue of Unity at Ekta Nagar in Gujarat’s Rajpipla district.
A lot can be learnt today from the urban planning of the remains of the city, ports and markets recovered in the excavation from Lothal, he said. “Lothal was not only a major trading centre of the Indus Valley Civilisation, but it was also a symbol of India’s maritime power and prosperity,” he said.
Recalling the time when Kutch in Gujarat flourished as a manufacturing hub for big ships, Modi stressed the commitment of the government to revamp sites of historical significance. “Large ships made in India were sold all over the world. The nation has suffered greatly as a result of this disregard for heritage, he claimed. “This scenario needs to be changed.”
Using the Statue of Unity at Ekta Nagar in Gujarat’s Rajpipla district as an example, Modi said, “The heritage developed in the country in the last eight years provides us a sense of the grandeur of India’s legacy.”
He claimed that much might be learned about contemporary urban planning from the Lothal excavation’s recovery of the city’s, ports, and markets’ ruins. “Lothal was not only a major trading centre of the Indus Valley Civilisation, but it was also a symbol of India’s maritime power and prosperity,” he said.
The National Maritime Heritage Complex, which is being built by the ministry of ports, shipping, and waterways at an estimated cost of 3,500 crore, began building in March of this year, according to officials. The project will include a number of ground-breaking and distinctive elements, including the Lothal miniature recreation of Harappan architecture and lifestyle, as well as four theme parks: the Memorial Theme Park, the Maritime and Navy Theme Park, the Climate Theme Park, and the Adventure and Amusement Theme Park. Among other things, it will feature the tallest lighthouse museum in the world, 14 galleries highlighting India’s marine past from Harappan periods to the present, and a coastal states pavilion showcasing the unique nautical traditions of states and Union territories.
According to the prime minister, numerous sites with historical significance have been found during the archaeological digs.
“We decided to return these centres of India’s pride — Dholavira and Lothal — to the form they were once famous for. Today we are seeing rapid work on that mission,” he said.
The prime minister claimed that attempts to restore the splendour of Lothal go beyond the complex and include numerous new modern infrastructure projects being built along Gujarat’s coastline. The planned semiconductor facility was also highlighted.
“Our government is working with full force to make this area developed again as it was developed thousands of years ago. Lothal, which fills us with pride because of its history, will now shape the future of the generations to come,” Modi said.