Written bySiddhant Pandey
By the time we celebrate our 75th Independence Day in 2022, India may have a new Parliament or a refurbished one, at least.
Reportedly, a pre-bid meeting was scheduled today with design and architecture firms to discuss the redevelopment of the Parliament.
This comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi had made the announcement last month for the Parliament's facelift.
Here are more details.
Sources at the Union Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry told The Hindu that a request for proposal (RFP) was sent on September 2.
The RFP invites design and architecture firms to share ideas for the redevelopment of the 3-km Central Vista, which stretches from the Rashtrapati Bhavan to the India Gate, and for constructing a new common Central Secretariat for offices of all ministries.
Announcing the facelift of the Parliament on August 19, Modi said that the decision was made after requests from Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla and Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu for an upgrade and modernization in terms of facilities.
The announcement was made at the inauguration of 36 duplex flats for MPs at North Avenue, built after demolishing earlier apartments constructed in 1951-52.
Modi said even Members of Parliament and media persons have asked for upgrading the facilities at the Parliament building, which is getting old. Earlier last month, Birla had urged the Prime Minister to include the Parliament's facelift in his resolution for 'New India.'
However, the demand was first made in 2015 by then Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, who had written to the then Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu to initiate construction of a new Parliament Building, as the existing structure is distressed and faces space-crunch issues.
Incidentally, Mahajan had also laid the foundation stone for the new duplex flats inaugurated last month.
The current Parliament building was commissioned in 1927 and built over 6 years at a cost of Rs. 83 lakh.
It was designed by architects Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker.
However, ever since, in-house staff, security personnel, media, and parliamentary activities have increased, Mahajan said, proposing that the new building should be built either within the Parliament complex or across Rajpath.
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