With the new Parliament building all set for inauguration this Sunday (28 May), the focus of the government would now shift to building chambers for around 800 MPs.
The proposed chambers will come up on the plot where Transport and Shram Shakti Bhawans are currently located.
The estimated cost of the chambers project is around Rs 1,200 crore.
Though the target of March 2024 for the chambers, according to the original plan, seems to be tough, the CPWD is expected to gear up to fulfil the challenging task.
We have to finalise the building plan first, said a senior Central Public Works Department (CPWD) official. The tenders have already been floated for the project.
The plan to relocate the offices of labour, water resources and shipping ministries has also been put on hold though a new building, constructed at a cost over Rs 350 crore, to accommodate them was inaugurated last month.
Only after all the offices are shifted from the Transport and Shram Shakti Bhawan, these two buildings will be demolished for construction of the MP chambers.
"Around 800 chambers for members of Parliament will be constructed in the redeveloped Shram Shakti Bhawan. Their construction will start in April 2022 and will be completed by March 2024,” a booklet titled "Parliament House: From Past To The Future" issued by the Lok Sabha secretariat in December 2020 had mentioned.
Though the second spell of Covid-19 in 2021 impacted the plan, officials admitted that there has been inordinate delay in this project.
The proposal for MP chambers is part of the redevelopment plan of the entire area, keeping in mind the likely increase in the number of lawmakers after the next delimitation exercise.
The government had claimed that the allotment of chambers would help the MPs carry out their tasks more efficiently.
Initially, it was planned that the chambers will be ready when new MPs get elected next year. But going by the current status, this will not materialise before 2025.
Sources said that the CPWD is still reworking on the building plan and it would take more time.
Earlier, a green panel had flagged the issue of the CPWD’s plan to keep only one tree at the site and transplant the remaining 248 trees to other locations.
Since then the plan is back on the department’s drawing board.
Arun Kumar Das is a senior journalist covering railways. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
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