New Delhi [India], December 5 (ANI): The new Parliament building, for which Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone and perform 'Bhoomi Pujan' on December 10, will be an epitome of Atmanirbhar Bharat and will feature crafts by local artisans, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said on Saturday.
The construction of the new Parliament building, which will have a seating capacity for 888 members in the Lok Sabha and 384 members in Rajya Sabha as against the present 543 members and 245 members respectively, will begin this month.
Speaking about the new Parliament building, Birla said that the temple of democracy is about to complete 100 years and said that the construction of the new Parliament building is set to begin this month after Prime Minister Narendra Modi lays the foundation stone and performs Bhumi Pujan on December 10.
The capacity of the Lok Sabha chamber is expected to be 1,224 seats for joint sittings.
"This is a proud moment for 130 crore Indians that after Independence, with the help of Indian architects, the new building too will be made by Indian artists and will be an epitome of Atmanirbhar Bharat. It will display local crafts and art from various states. It will showcase new art and handicraft of all the states. When we commemorate the 75th year of Independent India, we would enter our new building and both chambers will sit," Birla said.
He said that the new building, which will be 17,000 sqm bigger than the previous, will be earthquake-proof. We are the world's biggest democracy and we have to keep in mind that this is reflected in the new building, he added.
Birla said that the new building will be built on an area of 64,500 sqm at a cost of Rs 971 crores.
"I am fortunate to witness this all. In Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, collectively we urged the Prime Minister that our democracy has matured and we have touched new heights of development. In the present context, this building is not sufficient and not technologically sound to fulfil our responsibility and thus there is a need for a new building," Birla said.
"Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the government accepted our demand. Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu too had requested for the same," he added.
Earlier, Lok Sabha secretary-general Utpal Kumar Singh had informed that the construction is likely to be finished within two years so that the 75th year of Indian independence can be commemorated in the new Parliament building.
Saying that the Constitution had come into being in the current Parliament building, Birla said that it is a heritage property and will be preserved as such. He said there is a Committee, which will look into what can be done with the old building. But it will be kept the same with minor alterations if needed, Birla said.
"The new building will be equipped with modern amenities. We are discussing this with all political parties. The whole world will be able to see the Bhumi Pujan physically or virtually. We will invite floor leaders and chairpersons of Parliamentary Standing Committees will also be present," he said.
Birla said that Members of Parliament have demanded that they should have separate offices for Parliamentary work and added that it has been decided that in the Shram Shakti Bhawan 400sq ft office space will be allocated for them.
HCP Design, Planning and Management Private Limited has won the contract for building a new Central vista and Parliament building that will have four floors with separate access for the President, Prime Minister, Lok Sabha Speaker, Rajya Sabha chairperson, Members of Parliament and public.
The new building will be equipped with digital interfaces to create a paperless office.
Apart from the offices of MPs and ministries, the new building will have a Constitution hall to showcase the original Constitution. The officials said that big statues that adorn the space between the house and entry of Parliament will also get relocated as per the design.
"The building will be technologically sound and equipped with modern upgraded facilities. We changed many things with time but we need to think 100 years ahead and have incorporated it in the vision of this project. This won't be a building of brick and sand, but of aspirations of 130 crore people where MPs would deliberate on the needs and aspirations of people they represent," Birla said. (ANI)