DNA Exclusive: Bidding Farewell To Indias Iconic Old Parliament Building

NEW DELHI: With the commencement of a special session in the Parliament today, the historic building that stood as a symbol of India’s democracy for 76 years has been etched into the pages of history. It was in this very Parliament building that Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of Independent India, delivered his first speech titled “Tryst With Destiny” at midnight on August 14, marking a significant moment.

Today, 76 years later, Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivered his final speech from the same Parliament building, reminiscing the golden memories of the nation’s past. The Parliament Building designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker had its first brick laid on February 12, 1921. 

The construction of this sprawling building, covering nearly 6 acres, took six years and incurred a cost of 83 lakh rupees. The inauguration of the Parliament building was done on January 18, 1927, by the then Governor General, Lord Irwin.

Until the year 1911, Kolkata was the capital of British India. After the shift to Delhi, the British government felt the need for a new Parliament building, which eventually became the seat of power for independent India, 20 years after its inauguration.

The Parliament building, once considered a symbol of British authority, witnessed the transition of power from the British to an Independent India. In the 76 years of independence, this building became the temple of democracy. However, now is the time when the old Parliament building has passed on its rich legacy to the new one, ready to become the modern symbol of Indian democracy. Today, we conducted a special DNA test to bid farewell to the old parliament building.



The need for a new Parliament building arose primarily due to the upcoming delimitation exercise scheduled after the year 2026 when Lok Sabha constituencies will be redefined. The possibility of an increase in Lok Sabha seats necessitates more space for the newly elected MPs, making the old Parliament building inadequate.

Another reason is the outdated infrastructure of the old Parliament building. The government cites that the foundational structure of the parliament building has become outdated for modern amenities like sewer lines, air conditioning, CCTV, etc.



Additionally, security concerns have led to the construction of the new Parliament building. The shift of Delhi from Zone-2 to Zone-4 in terms of seismic activity necessitated a quake-resistant parliament building.

The new Parliament building has been designed taking into account all these needs. However, the big question is – what will happen to the old Parliament building? The central government has answered this question in the Rajya Sabha. The old Parliament building will be repaired and repurposed for alternative use.

Lastly, the growing number of Parliament employees has resulted in overcrowding within the old Parliament building. As time progressed, the number of parliamentary staff increased, causing congestion within the premises.

The old Parliament building will now become a heritage asset for the country, preserved as a museum for people to visit and explore its historical significance. In today’s episode of the Zee News prime-time show “DNA,” anchor Sourabh Raaj Jain delves into the past, reflecting on the old Parliament’s role and its impact on India’s journey over nearly a century.

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