Jairam Ramesh calls new parliament building Modi Multiplex
The Congress leader said that if architecture could kill democracy, the PM has succeeded without even rewriting the constitution
Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Saturday, 23 September, said that the new Parliament building launched with much fanfare actually realises prime minister Narendra Modi's objectives, and that if architecture could kill democracy, the Prime Minister has already succeeded even without rewriting the Constitution.
Taking a pot shot at the government, Ramesh, who is Congress general secretary communication in-charge said: "The new Parliament building launched with so much hype actually realises the Prime Minister's objectives very well. It should be called the Modi Multiplex or Modi Marriot."
"After four days, what I saw was the death of confabulations and conversations—both inside the two Houses and in the lobbies. If architecture can kill democracy, the Prime Minister has already succeeded even without rewriting the Constitution," the Rajya Sabha MP said.
He said that binoculars are needed to see each other since the halls are simply not cozy or compact. "The old Parliament building not only had a certain aura but it facilitated conversations. It was easy to walk between Houses, the Central Hall, and the corridors. This new one weakens the bonding needed to make the running of Parliament a success. Quick coordination between the two Houses is now exceedingly cumbersome. In the old building, if you were lost, you would find your way back again since it was circular. In the new building, if you lose your way, you are lost in a maze. The old building gave you a sense of space and openness while the new one is almost claustrophobic," he said pointing out the architecture or the building."
He said that the sheer joy of simply hanging out in Parliament has disappeared. "I used to look forward to going to the old building. The new complex is painful and agonising. I am sure many of my colleagues across party lines feel the same. I have also heard from the staff in the Secretariat that the design of the new building has not considered the various functionalities required to help them do their work. This is what happens when no consultations are done with the people who will use the building," Ramesh said.
"Perhaps a better use for the new Parliament building will be found after regime change in 2024," the Congress leader added.