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Parliament building unsafe, need new building: CPWD tells SC

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The existing Parliament building is structurally unsafe,. cramped and inadequate, the Central Public Works Department (CPWD) has informed the. Supreme Court. A new Parliament building that reflects indigenous technology, knowledge. and expertise is required to be built next to it, it said.

CPWD has submitted that the Constitution. has frozen the number of seats in the Parliament till 2026, but it might go up after the completion. of the delimitation exercise. Therefore, a new building will be required. to house a larger Parliament.

The department has said the existing Parliament building. cannot be expanded to build additional seating for a larger Parliament. It also submitted to the apex court that the existing .building needs to be vacated for 18 to 24 months for an overhaul.

The CPWD has also clarified that there is no plan. to destroy any existing heritage structure. Rather, the existing structures will be upgraded to last longer. It also clarified that there .is no plan to alter the central vista.

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The department has also submitted to the .apex court in an affidavit that the government had. not proposed to spend Rs 20,000 crore on the project at one go. Instead, it will be done over a period of six years. In order to ensure the smooth functioning. of the Parliament, either an alternative building needs to be identified. and modified at considerable cost or a new building. could be constructed.

CPWD has submitted that it will be a pragmatic approach. to construct a new building as the existing Parliament building cannot be further expanded. The department has submitted. that the new Lok Sabha will be thrice the size of the existing one,. whereas. .the Rajya Sabha will. be four times the existing size. The new building. .will be also equipped with state-of-the-art. technology and. the department asserted that it will save Rs 1,000 crore through rentals.