Lu­tyens’ makeover to be over be­fore 2024: Puri

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times City - Di­[email protected] times­group.com Hardeep Puri said it was the Prime Min­is­ter’s dream project of re­con­struct­ing those parts of Delhi that owed their orig­i­nal con­struc­tion back to the years 1911 to 1927

New Delhi: The cen­tral govern­ment will re­con­struct ar­eas around Ra­j­path, known as Cen­tral Vista, which will in­clude a new Par­lia­ment build­ing, be­fore the next elec­tion is held in 2024 and work on the ground may be­gin by next year, ur­ban af­fairs min­is­ter Hardeep Singh Puri said on Fri­day.

In the first of­fi­cial state­ment on the mas­sive re­de­vel­op­ment project made pub­lic on Thurs­day and speak­ing at a FICCI event, Puri said, “It’s the Prime Min­is­ter’s dream project of re­con­struct­ing those parts of Delhi which owe their orig­i­nal con­struc­tion back to the years 1911 to 1927; that’s when North Block, South Block, Rash­tra­p­ati Bhawan, Par­lia­ment House and the Cen­tral Vista came up. We are go­ing to re­con­struct all of that. By the time we meet in 2024 be­fore the elec­tion there will be a new Par­lia­ment build­ing.”

The govern­ment, in its bid doc­u­ment for re­vamp­ing the en­tire area, has in­di­cated July 2022 as the time­line for ei­ther build­ing a new Par­lia­ment or to com­plete the re­vamp of the ex­ist­ing one.

Asked about the site and design of the Par­lia­ment build­ing, the min­is­ter said these as­pects are cur­rently “un­der con­sid­er­a­tion”.

Puri said some of the build­ings in the project zone would be razed as they were built “in a hurry” af­ter In­de­pen­dence to meet im­me­di­ate re­quire­ment. He said some of the build­ings don’t meet the cur­rent needs.

Sources said

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ma­jor ob­jec­tive was to build iconic build­ings and other struc­tures in the cap­i­tal’s power cen­tre that have been lack­ing in the post In­de­pen­dence pe­riod. They added that at sev­eral high level meet­ings it was dis­cussed how Mughals de­vel­oped Sa­ha­ja­han­abad and built Red Fort while British built the build­ings on Raisina Hills. But no such land­mark de­vel­op­ment took place since 1947 with of­fice build­ings be­ing added one af­ter the other.

“So, a fo­cus of the project will be to go for In­dia’s own ar­chi­tec­ture and show­case it. We have in­vited bids from spe­cialised firms and ar­chi­tects which will be se­lected to pre­pare the over­all plan­ning,” said an of­fi­cial.

Of­fi­cials said the over­all plan was ap­proved by the Prime Min­is­ter be­fore govern­ment in­vited the bids to se­lect the plan­ner-de­signer to pre­pare the mas­ter plan. They also said there is no sug­ges­tive list of which build­ings may have to be pulled down and it will be up to the se­lected firm to come up with the best op­tion for the en­tire area along Ra­j­path.

Puri said the pro­posed com­mon Cen­tral Sec­re­tar­iat would have sev­eral build­ings in one com­plex and these would be in­ter­nally linked. More­over, there would be fa­cil­i­ties such as Metro sta­tion within the com­plex and other fa­cil­i­ties to take care of the last mile con­nec­tiv­ity.

The govern­ment has re­vived the mega sec­re­tar­iat plan af­ter more than four years.

The Cen­tre, in its bid doc­u­ment, has in­di­cated July 2022 as the time­line for ei­ther build­ing a new Par­lia­ment house or to com­plete the re­vamp of the ex­ist­ing one

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