Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone for the new Parliament building on December, 10th. The new building is set to ready by 2022, coinciding with the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence. Lok Sabha speaker Om Birla, adding that the Parliament session in that year will hopefully be held at the new building.
Making this announcement at a press conference, Birla said, “We started the journey of independent India in the old building, and when we complete 75 years, we will have the session of both Houses in the new Parliament building… It will not be a building of bricks and stones, it will be the fulfilment of the dreams of 130 crore people.”
The speaker, who is the custodian of the Parliament, formally invited PM Modi for the foundation stone-laying ceremony at the press conference, who will also be performing a “Bhoomi Pujan” during the ceremony.The grand ceremony will be attended by leaders and representatives of all parties who will be present physically or via virtual mode.
The building will be constructed on an area of 64, 500 square metres and will cost Rs. 971 crore. The construction of the building will have 2000 people directly engaged in its development, while 9000 more indirectly. More than 200 artists from various parts of the country will also work for the building as it is supposed to incorporate indigenious architecture from different parts of the country, and showcase the cultural diversity. “It will display local crafts and art from various states,” the Speaker added.
In September this year, Tata Projects Ltd. won the bid to construct the building at a cost of Rs 861.90 crore under the Central Vista redevelopment project.The design for the new Parliament has been prepared by HCP Design, Planning and Management Pvt Ltd. A proposal to revamp Central Vista and rebuild or relocate several administrative buildings was first introduced in 2010s. The construction has been challenged in the Supreme Court and has been questioned by the opposition. It has been justified by the current government stating that the current one was “showing signs of distress and over-use”.
The building, which will be earthquake-resistant, and adaptable to the most modern digital technology will have a sitting capacity for 1,224 MPs, for joint sessions, while a new office complex for all MPs of both the Houses would be built at the site of the existing Shram Shakti Bhawan. Keeping in mind the future increase in the number of members in the two houses, the Lok Sabha chamber will have a seating capacity for 888 members, while Rajya Sabha will have 384 seats for the upper house members.
The current Parliament house will be conserved as an archaeological asset of the country. The foundation stone of the existing Parliament House was laid on February 12, 1921, and the construction took six years and cost Rs 83 lakh at that time. “The existing temple of democracy is completing 100 years… It is a matter of pride for our countrymen that the new one will be built by our own people as a prime example of Aatmanirbhar Bharat,” the Lok Sabha speaker said.