Man Spends About RM13,000 To Create Life-Sized Silicone Replica Of His Late Wife

"I fulfilled her wish."

Cover image via Times of India

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In accordance with a report by Times of India, 65-year-old Tapas Sandilya, a retired government employee who hails from Kolkata, India, has spent a whopping INR250,000 (approximately RM13,376) on a silicone statue that resembles his late wife, Indrani

Back in May 2021, Indrani passed away from complications related to COVID-19 after a second wave of the pandemic hit the nation in spades. Sandilya himself was in isolation at the time of his wife's death, which unfortunately resulted with the 59-year-old passing with no one by her side.

To remember her in her glorious form, Sandilya, with the help of a sculptor, resurrected a lifelike figure in memory of his beloved wife.

Image via Times of India

According to Sandilya, the idea for the sculpture actually cropped up a decade ago, after he and his wife visited a temple that was adorned with the statue of an Indian guru

In a statement to Times of India, Sandilya recalled visiting the Iskcon temple with Indrani in the Mayapur neighbourhood of Bamanpukur in West Bengal, India, 10 years ago. Upon seeing a lifelike statue of Indian guru AC Bhaktivedanta Swami, Indrani told Sandilya that it was her desire for a similar statue be created of her likeness should she pass away before her husband

Moving forward to present day, Sandilya got in touch with sculptor Subimal Das, who curates museum replicas, to help create his vision. According to Subimal, this was one of the most challenging projects he has ever worked on. The grafting of her hair took one month alone.

"I had to work with Subimal for the clay-moulding phase, as nothing less than Indrani's actual facial expression would do for me. I, after all, lived with her for 39 years," said Sandilya in a statement with Times of India.

After six months and plenty of hard work, the completed replica of Indrani can be found sitting in her favourite spot in the couple's home. Made of silicone and weighing approximately 30kgs, she is dressed in a silk saree she once wore to her son's wedding reception before her passing. The replica also has gold jewellery on, Indrani's favourite pieces from when she was alive.

Image via Times of India

Indrani's tailor was also involved in the project, assisting in the fitting of the replica's garment, as he knew her exact measurements

"If we can keep framed photographs at home after someone's death, why not a statue?" said Sandilya. Opening up to the publication, he stated that while his family initially did not approve of the statue, they gave in after some time. 

"Everything had to be a perfect fit. My wife died on 4 May 2021, and I just wanted to fulfil her wish," said Sandilya in his closing thoughts.

Watch the full clip of Sandilya presenting the silicone replica of his late wife below:

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