Mahabharata has a significant place in Hindu mythology as well as ancient Indian history. The epic battle of Mahabharata is said to have taken place at Kurukshetra, in Haryana, where the Pandava (representing Good) had defeated the Kaurava (representing Evil).
It was at the start of this epic battle that Lord Krishna, an avatar and charioteer of Arjun, spoke to Arjun on values, duty, responsibility, ethic, philosophy, family, and leadership. This sermon is documented in the Bhagwad Gita, which also forms the guide and reference for Hindu values, beliefs and reference.
Karnal in Haryana was founded by another protagonist, Karna. He was the elder and illegitimate brother of the Pandavas, who fought from the rival side, the Kauravas, in a fight that represented the conflict between loyalties to family versus friend. Today, the town of Karnal in Haryana is named after him.
Given the importance of the Mahabharata in India, it is only natural that the present generation contributes towards the preservation of the event and what it represents and pass it on to the next generation. Towards this, Naya Haryana proposes to document the event by building a memorial that will also serve as a heritage site, which the next generation can visit and re-live the historical event.
Given that the epic battle took place at Kurukshetra, it may well be a suitable place to locate this memorial. There are several objectives for building this memorial. Haryana was a pioneering state to develop the concept of weekend tourism, way back in the late 60s and early 70s and this successful concept was later replicated by other states. Haryana has a well-developed network of low cost tourism hotels spread all over the state and this memorial could well be another tourist destination, for both the domestic traveller, as well as the international tourist.
It is proposed to build the memorial-cum-heritage site that will include statues of characters in the Mahabharata in Kurukshetra. The memorial will have sculpted walls that will depict significant moments of the events leading up to the battle and the battle itself. In addition, there will also be paintings and murals that will capture moments from the battle. This will also present an opportunity for artisans, sculptors, masons and other skilled labour to showcase their talent and will be a part of the Naya Haryana s program to assist and encourage talented craftsmen by creating job opportunities.
To make the memorial attractive to tourists, it is also proposed to create a powerful Son-et-Lumiere show (Sound & Light show) at the site. The show will be a powerful rendition of the epic battle that will be both gripping and interesting to children and adults alike, while informing and educating them of the events that took place in the run up to the battle and finally the battle itself. This will be a first-of-its-kind show on the Mahabharata, inIndia and will use the latest in technology and lighting.
To ensure that all visitors are comfortable, the Mahabharata Memorial will offer a food court along with souvenir shops, which will generate income to support the maintenance of the heritage site. To minimise the dependency on the electricity grid, the memorial will use the latest in solar technology and implement water harvesting to minimise water consumption.
Naya Haryana is committed to preserving the culture and heritage ofIndia and will bring back the lost glory of Kurukshetra to the limelight it deserves.