A pensioner has spent £2,500 making a life-like silicon dummy of his dead wife to keep him company on the sofa.
The incredible replica was commissioned by government worker, Tapas Sandilya, who says he had it created as it was his spouse Indrani's dying wish.
It took six months for sculptor Subimal Das, 46, to complete the work, which weighs 30kgs (66lbs), and is now adorned with jewellery and a silk sari she had worn to their son's wedding reception.
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She now sits, hands crossed, on a swing – her favourite spot at their house in Kaikhali, India.
Indrani was 59-years-old when she passed away alone in hospital, during the second wave of the Covid pandemic, while her 65-year-old husband was forced to isolate at their home.
Mr Sandilya aims to abide his wife’s wish through the statue, he told The Times of India , as he said there was an instance when his wife had asked him to build a statue of her.
“We visited the Iskcon temple in Mayapur a decade ago and could not stop admiring the lifelike statue of the order’s founder AC Bhaktivedanta Swami,” he told the national daily.
He added: “It was then Indrani had me of her desire for a similar statue if she happened to pass away before me.”
Amused at the attention it is getting from his neighbours, Mr Sandilya said: “My wife died on May 4, 2021 and I just wanted to fulfill her wish.”
His search for a sculptor came to an end last year, when he zeroed on 46-year-old Subimal Das. Mr Sandilya described how he worked with the sculptor for days while making a clay model of his wife, something that would then form the br of the silicone casting.
“Nothing less than Indrani’s actual facial expression would do for me,” he told the outlet. “I, after all, lived with her for 39 years”.
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