“Regarding Ram Setu, we are very much committed that at any cost we will respect the feeling of the people. We will not demolish it,” Union shipping and highway minister Nitin Gadkari said on Thursday.
An aerial photograph of the Ram Setu (upper left) as seen from Sri Lanka. Imgur
The Ram Setu is a natural bridge made of limestone shoals that connects Pamban in Tamil Nadu, India, to Mannar in Sri Lanka. The mention of this bridge was first made in Ramayana. Lord Rama is believed to have crossed this bridge to reach Lanka and rescue his wife Sita who was held captive by Ravana.
A painting depicting Vanaras building the Ram Setu. Travel Planet
Centuries ago the bridge was much above the sea level.
In 2013, the Congress-led UPA government ignored the objections raised by Tamil Nadu government regarding the project. The state government had told the Centre that the construction of a shipping channel would destroy the biodiversity in the region. They had also asked the Centre to declare the Ram Setu a national monument.
A Google map picture shows a submerged Ram Setu.
In 2015, Subramanian Swamy had told the Supreme Court that the government will not touch the Ram Setu.