New Delhi, Sep 16 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be in his native Gujarat on his 67th birthday on Sunday to dedicate the Sardar Sarovar Dam to the nation and to address two rallies.

He is also expected to visit his mother Heeraben Modi, a tradition he has been following over the years.

Modi will visit two of his favourite projects on his birthday — the Sardar Sarovar Dam Project and the Statue of Unity being built in the memory of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.

While a 182-metre Statue of Unity is a project conceived by Modi, he has also been consistently in favour of increasing the height of the Sardar Sarovar Dam.

The height of the dam was recently raised to 138.68 metres.

An official release said that the increase in the dam height will facilitate a usable storage of 4.73 Million Acre Feet (MAF) and will greatly benefit the participating states of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.

It said that the project has helped transport the waters of the Narmada river to the water-deficient areas of Gujarat through an elaborate canal and pipeline network.

“Irrigation from the project is expected to benefit about 10 lakh farmers and drinking water to be supplied to various villages and towns is likely to benefit up to 4 crore people,” the release said.

The project has been described as one of the biggest human endeavours for water transport. Up to a billion units of hydropower are also expected to be generated annually.

From the dam site, the Prime Minister will travel to Sadhu Bet, where the Statue of Unity, an iconic statue and associated memorial complex for Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, is currently under construction.

“The Prime Minister will be given an overview of the progress of work on this project. The project comprises a 182 metre tall statue, an exhibition hall, a memorial garden, and a Visitor Centre,” the Prime Minister’s Office said.

The Prime Minister will attend the closing ceremony of the Narmada Mahotsav and address the gathering at Dabhoi.

He will lay the foundation stone for the National Tribal Freedom Fighters’ Museum during the event.

The Prime Minister will later visit Amreli, where he will inaugurate a new market yard of APMC. He will also inaugurate new plants of Amar Dairy, and lay the foundation stone of a honey production centre. He will address a Sahakar Sammelan at Amreli.

This is published unedited from the IANS feed.