Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday laid the foundation stone of a new Parliament building. The groundbreaking ceremony of the new Parliament building was attended by several leaders from various political parties, cabinet ministers and ambassadors of different countries. A few chief ministers and governors also attended the event virtually.PM Modi performed the 'bhoomi pujan' for the new building, which is expected to be completed by 2022 at an estimated cost of Rs 971 crore. The ground breaking rituals were performed by pujaris from the Sringeri Math, Karnataka.
A 'Sarva Dharma Prarthana' (inter-faith prayer) was also performed by various religious leaders at the foundation stone laying ceremony of the new Parliament building.
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Democracy is a culture in India. Democracy is a life value, a way of life and the soul of the life of the nation for India. Democracy of India is a system developed with the experience of centuries: PM Narendra Modi at foundation stone laying ceremony of new Parliament building
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If the old Parliament House gave direction to post-independence India, the new building would become a witness to the creation of 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat," said Prime Minister Narendra Modi
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I can never forget the moment in my life when I had the opportunity to come to Parliament House for the first time in 2014 as an MP. Then before stepping into this temple of democracy, I had bowed my head and saluted this temple of democracy: PM Modi
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"This is a day of pride for over 130 crore Indians when we are witnessing this historic moment. The new Parliament building is an example of the co-existence of the new and the old. This is an effort to make changes within oneself in accordance with the time and needs," said PM Modi
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"Today is a historic day as the foundation of the New Parliament building has been laid. We the people of India together will construct this new building of the Parliament," said PM Modi
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla had earlier said, "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 new building will showcase the cultural diversity of the country. Hopefully, in the 75th year of Independence (2022), Parliament session will be held in the new building," he had said.
Inauguration of the New Parliament building:
- The existing Parliament building will be conserved as it is an archaeological asset of the country.
- The existing building is a British-era structure, designed by Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker who were responsible for planning and construction of New Delhi.
- 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 opening ceremony was performed on January 18, 1927 by the then Governor-General of India, Lord Irwin.
- The new building will have an area of 64,500 square metres.
- The new building will also have a grand Constitution Hall to showcase India's democratic heritage, a lounge for members of Parliament, a library, multiple committee rooms, dining areas and ample parking space.
- In the new building, the Lok Sabha chamber will have a seating capacity for 888 members, while Rajya Sabha will have 384 seats for members. The Lok Sabha chamber will have an option to increase its sitting capacity to 1,224 members during joint sessions.
- This has been done keeping in mind the future increase in the number of members for the two houses. At present, Lok Sabha has a sanctioned strength of 543 members and Rajya Sabha 245.
- In September this year, Tata Projects Limited won the bid to construct the new Parliament building. The new building will be constructed close to the existing one under the Central Vista redevelopment project.
- The existing Parliament House building will be suitably retro-fitted to provide more functional spaces for parliamentary events, to ensure its usage along with the new building.
- The existing building is a massive circular edifice of 560 feet in diameter. The Parliament House Estate is enclosed by an ornamental red sandstone wall or iron grills with iron gates that can be closed when occasions demand. The building has twelve gates.