In 1969, during the Telengana Movement demanding a separate state, 369 students were killed in police firing. After the Movement was called off, it was decided to erect a memorial in memory of the students who scarified their lives for the Telangana cause. In 1972, the Martyrs Memorial was installed in Gun Park, opposite the Assembly building. The memorial is 25 feet high and has five separate sections. The black polished granite base has nine bullet impressions on four sides to represent the 369 students. The mythological sun-arch above the granite base, was inspired by the Stupa at Sanchi. Above the sun-arch, nine strips or columns were carved depicting the (then) nine districts in the Telangana region. Next is the trapezium structure, with a dharma chakra on four sides representing tolerance and truth. At the top is a white lily flower symbolizing the freshness of youth and immortality of the soul. The memorial became a symbol of the Telangana struggle in recent years; protesting students and politicians would gather and court arrest here. When the state of Telangana finally came into existence on June 2 2014, it was at this memorial that the first Telangana CM paid his respects before being sworn in. The date was then declared to be observed as Telangana Martyrs Memorial Day every year throughout the state.