Prime Minster Manmohan Singh will declare open the Assembly complex building on the Omandurar Government Estate on March 13.
Accepting Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi’s invitation through a letter of December 30, the Prime Minister, in his reply of January 9, said he would be happy to visit Chennai for the purpose. (A copy of the letter was released here on Wednesday.) He had asked his office to finalise the details of the event in consultation with the State government.
Concluding the debate on the motion of thanks to the Governor for his address, the Chief Minister had on Monday turned nostalgic and given an account of the history of the Assembly that functioned from the historic Fort St. George. He then indicated that the 2010-2011 Budget session would be held in the new complex that faces Anna Salai.
It was in May 2007 that the decision to construct a new complex for the Assembly was taken.
Though Mr. Karunanidhi laid the foundation stone in June 2008, the site was formally handed over to the contractors five months later.
The Assembly-Secretariat complex will have a Block ‘A’ and a Block ‘B.’ It is Block ‘A’ that Dr. Singh will declare open in two months. This block, with a plinth area of about 9.3 lakh square feet, will house the Legislative Assembly Hall and the Assembly Secretariat, besides the offices of the Governor, the Chief Minister, Ministers, the Chief Secretary and certain core departments. It will have six floors apart from the ground floor.
For this block, the cost sanctioned by the government was Rs. 425.57 crore. The value of the contract awarded to the executing agency was about Rs. 347 crore. As of now, around Rs. 225 crore had been spent, a Public Works Department (PWD) official said.
By March, the ground and first floors will be ready. Apart from the Assembly Hall, the rooms of the Governor, the Chief Minister, Ministers, the Leader of the Opposition, leaders of other legislature parties and the Assembly Secretary will be on the ground floor.
The Assembly Secretariat will be on the first floor. The other parts of the block are expected to be ready by May, the official added.