New Delhi: A masterplan will soon be prepared for decongesting Parliament House to restore its character of a heritage building, a high-level committee decided on Thursday.
The Heritage Committee of Parliament headed by Speaker Meira Kumar decided to go in for consultants to be hired by the CPWD to prepare a masterplan which would ensure that only "core activity" is carried out in the 85-year-old building.
The decision is significant as it came in the first meeting of the Committee after the talk began of a possible new Parliament House Complex.
The Parliament House is a Grade I heritage structure, designed by Edwin Lutyens and Hervert Baker. The Heritage Committee is Joint Committee on Maintenance of Heritage Character and Development of Parliament House Complex.
Only recently, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal had frowned upon the idea of an alternative Parliament House. He is of the view that the present heritage building should be retained.
"This (the heritage building) should be retained as Parliament House and it should be cleared of all encroachments," he had said.
Insisting that these were his personal views, Bansal said that every effort should be made to make the Parliament House complex a functional place by removing all other offices from the building.
Except the offices of the Lok Sabha Speaker, Rajya Sabha Chairman, Secretary Generals of both the Houses, the Table offices and the office for reporters and some other offices, all other offices could be moved to a new building.
He said utilities like MPs canteen should also be shifted to the new building which should be connected to the Parliament House by an underpass for ensuring quick access to all concerned.