Apex Court nod for stone-laying ceremony barring construction works of Central Vista Project
Today, the Supreme Court permitted the Centre to go forward with the proposed foundation stone-laying ceremony for the Central Vista project after the government guaranteed that no construction or demolition would start till the Supreme Court decides the pending petitions on the issue.
The Supreme Court said to the Solicitor General, "You can lay the foundation stone , you can carryon paperwork but no construction or demolition , no cutting down any trees."
Tushar Mehta, Solicitor General has informed the Court that there would only be a foundation stone-laying ceremony and that no construction, demolition or trees feeling works would be done for the project as of now.
In September 2019, the renovation announcement was made envisaging a new triangular Parliament building with a seating capacity of 900 to 1,200 MPs. It is predicted that the construction will be completed by August 2022 when the Country will be celebrating its 75th Independence Day. The common Central Secretariat is targeted to be built by 2024.
On December 10, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone for the new Parliament building. It is expected to be finished at a cost of Rs 971 crore by 2022, said Lok Sabha Speaker on Saturday.
The Supreme Court said the Centre can go ahead with the paperwork in the meantime.
The Apex Court had reserved its verdict on November 5 following a batch of petitions, which have raised questions over the Central Vista project.
The Centre’s ambitious project covers around three km stretch between Rashtrapati Bhavan to India Gate in Lutyens’ Delhi. Earlier, the solicitor general had argued that the project will enable the government to ‘save money,’ which is paid as rent to accommodate central government ministries in New Delhi. He even stressed that the decision for a new Parliament building has not been taken in a rush and no norms or law have been violated in any way. The Centre had also said that there was no irrationality while deciding on the consultant for the project.
HCP Designs, a Gujarat-based architecture firm has won the consultancy bid for the Central Vista project.
Among the pleas filed in Supreme Court on the issue includes one filed by activist Rajeev Suri, against some permissions given to the authorities including the nod to change of land use.
Besides, the apex court had also pointed out that any change at the ground level by the authorities for the project will be ‘at their own risk.’