Mrunal Manmay Dash

Two days after a 40-foot hockey player’s statue installed during the Men’s Hockey World Cup collapsed in Rourkela, the sculptor of the statue alleged that it was sabotaged by miscreants.

“I had a doubt. And it was confirmed when I saw the fallen statue. If the statue did fall due to a storm or sub-standard work, then the pipes would have been bent. But here I can see the pipes were cut with the help of cutters. Most probably with battery operated cutters,” alleged sculptor Kanta Kishore Maharana who built the statue.

“There were four layers of iron in the statue and the miscreant cut through all the layers to make the statue fall,” he alleged.

Speaking on the matter, Rourkela SP Mitrabhanu Mohapatra said, "The hockey player’s statue had fallen down the other day. It can either be a sabotage or it might have fallen down due to a storm or other reasons. We have anyways registered an FIR. We are investigating the matter. We will even seek the opinion of metallurgy experts if the need arises.”

The 40-foot-tall statue of a Hockey player was installed near the Rourkela airport five months ago during the FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup.

The giant statue dedicated to the Hockey players was installed in January first week of this year ahead of FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023. Since a small park with fountains was developed near the statue, it became a favourite spot for local residents to spend their leisure time.

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