As Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurates the new Parliament complex on Sunday, we take a look at the latest architectural marvel to grace Delhi, which already boasts of several historical monuments such as the Qutb Minar and numerous British-era buildings.
The upper and lower house chambers of the new Parliament are inspired by national symbols, the peacock and lotus.
Lok Sabha chamber
Inspired by India's national bird peacock, the Lok Sabha chamber's basic colour scheme is green. The chamber which is three times bigger than the old chamber can seat 888 members as opposed to the earlier capacity of 550. When a joint session of Parliament takes place, seats could be increased to 1,272. In the old building, the joint sessions took place in the Central Hall, having a capacity of a mere 440 seats.
Rajya Sabha chamber
The design of this chamber is based on the lotus, the national flower. The colour scheme is red, with carpet and seat cushions of this colour. It can seat 384 members as opposed to 250.
There are in total six doors for the new Parliament, including three ceremonial entrances reserved for the President and other dignitaries and MPs. The three ceremonial doors on three corners symbolise Knowledge, Strength and Duty.
Courtyard with banyan tree
There are three ceremonial entrances to the new Parliament. The central courtyard has a banyan, the national tree. The building is triangular-shaped and is located adjacent to the Old Parliament, on Plot number 118 between Red Cross Road and Raisina Road in Delhi.
The 21 m-tall building has four floors and the total area is 64,500 sq m. At the apex is an Ashoka emblem, or the Lion Capital of Ashoka, sculpted out of bronze.
The lounge is situated adjacent to the central courtyard. MPs and visitors with special permission will be allowed entry.
From the central lounge, one can enter the Constitution Hall. The Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha chambers are located on either side of this hall.
The state-of-the-art office rooms are situated on all the four floors. They include those for the Prime Minister, Ministers, Speaker, rooms for Parliamentary committees and leaders, Parliament Library and canteen.
A comparison of the New and Old Parliaments
The old Parliament building, an architectural splendour and a historic landmark that guided the destiny of India for nearly a century and the illustrious legacy of which will now be consigned to the pages of history, was inaugurated on January 18, 1927 by the then Viceroy Lord Irwin. Here's a comparison of the two buildings.
Status of Central Vista project
The Central Vista project includes the new Central Secretariat, new residences for the Vice-President and Prime Minister and Prime Minister’s office complex. The deadline for completion is 2026. The various buildings in Central Vista and their status is as follows.