To keep the dignity of the old Parliament building intact, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has suggested that the structure be called ‘Samvidhan Sadan’ (Constitution House) in the future. It has been a key witness to India’s rise in the global platform since it gained Independence.
Over the years, the building had been the venue of several historic landmark decisions. (Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
New Delhi: India has begun its journey with the new Parliament building, leaving behind the old structure with innumerable memories, history and legacy. To keep the dignity of the old Parliament building intact, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has suggested that the structure be called ‘Samvidhan Sadan’ (Constitution House) in the future.
What is the significance of the old Parliament building?
The old Parliament building has been the key witness to India’s rise in the global platform over the years since it gained Independence from British colonial rule in 1947. It was the first Parliament of a free country, it was there the Constitution of India was adopted.
Also read: PM Modi suggests ‘Samvidhan Sadan’ as new name for old Parliament building
Over the years, the Parliament building has been the venue of several historic landmark decisions, and that is why, it is essential to preserve its rich heritage. It is a colonial-era building designed by British architects Sir Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker and the construction lasted for six years, 1921 to 1927. It was initially called the Council House and it housed the Imperial Legislative Council before India got its Independence.
In 1956, two floors were added to the old structure and in 2006, the Parliament Museum was created to showcase India’s rich democratic heritage. Several modifications have been made over the years to the purpose of a modern Parliament.
Also read: New Parliament Building: Why was it important to replace the old structure?
What will happen to the old Parliament building?
The old Parliament building won’t be demolished and will be ‘retrofitted’ to provide more functional spaces for parliamentary events. PM Modi has already suggested calling it ‘Samvidhan Sadan’, ensuring the historic building will live on.
In 2021, the then Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri informed the Rajya Sabha that the old building would be repaired and made available for alternative use. The national archives will be shifted to the new parliament building which will give the old building more space. While there are some reports which claim that the old structure will be converted into a museum.
#WATCH | Special Session of Parliament | PM Narendra Modi says, “I have a suggestion. Now, when we are going to the New Parliament, its (Old Parliament building) dignity should never go down. This should not be left just as the Old Parliament building. So, I urge that if you… pic.twitter.com/T8izb46MfO
— ANI (@ANI) September 19, 2023
On September 18, PM Modi, while speaking during the Special Session, paid his respect to ‘every brick’ of the old Parliament building and said that the new building will showcase the new hopes and confidence of India.