The Centre’s plan to construct a new Parliament complex by 2022 has left several parliamentarians unimpressed. While some did not like the new look of the Parliament building, others questioned the need to construct a separate complex instead of revamping the old one.
The plan to construct new complexes for both Houses of Parliament is part of a larger redesign planned for the entire Central Vista area. The new design is supposed to consist of two large structures, where the two Houses of Parliament would be housed in a triangular complex.
The matter was discussed at a general purposes committee meeting on March 19, The Economic Times reported.
At the meet chaired by Om Birla, Speaker of the Lok Sabha, a few lawmakers reportedly complained that the design of the new structure resembles a seven-star hotel and lacks the gravitas that the original Parliament building has.
“The interiors are alright, but the outer structure definitely does not have or evoke the sense of grandeur and iconic nature of Parliament. A lot of objections were raised by several MPs on the issue,” the article quotes one lawmaker as saying.
One of the Opposition MPs, who attended the meet, said the design of the new building isn’t airy enough and the choice of construction material such as granite and glass might make it look like a ‘hotel lobby’.
While some parliamentarians questioned why the existing structure isn’t being revamped, a veteran politician pointed out that lack of space is one of the main reasons why the existing structure cannot be expanded, the report said.
A handful of MPs raised concerns over the type of construction material that the government plans to use, which would mostly be imported, unlike that of the existing structure which was built using material available locally. For instance, when the British constructed the present Parliament building, they used local Indian stones, which gave it a unique and authentic look and feel.
Besides, MPs were concerned about the fate of several iconic sculptures and other artefacts that exist in the present complex.
Another concern of lawmakers was the Central Hall being retained in its present form and no equivalent of it in the new one. They also pointed out how once MPs start operating from the new complex, the old one may be subject to eventual neglect and not be maintained properly.
Questions concerning the cost of erecting the new structure were raised by politicians cutting across party lines, including members of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
(Source: Money Control)