We are developing country’s capital according to aspirations of new India: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurates Defence Offices Complexes in New Delhi, on September 16, 2021. Twitter/@narendramodi  

“In the 75th year of Independence, we are taking an important step towards developing the capital of the country according to the needs and aspirations of the new India,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday after inaugurating two new defence office complexes of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) constructed as part of the Central Vista redevelopment project at a cost of ₹775 crore.

These modern offices, now built at Kasturba Gandhi Marg and Africa Avenue, would go a long way in effectively carrying out all the work related to the security of the nation. “This is a big step towards the creation of a modern defence enclave in the capital,” Mr. Modi said speaking at a formal ceremony at the new complex on Africa Avenue. “This new Defence Office Complex is going to further strengthen our efforts to make the work of our forces more convenient and more effective,” he stated.

Over 7,000 officers and staff belonging to 27 different organisations — attached offices of MoD, service headquarters and other subordinate offices — at present in hutments and old buildings around South Block and North Block will move to the new complexes soon.

“When we talk about the capital, it is not just a city, and the capital of any country is a symbol of the thinking, determination, strength and culture of that country,” Mr. Modi said. “India is the mother of democracy. Therefore, the capital of India should be such, people and public in the centre.”

‘Completed in record time’

The construction of the complexes was to be completed in 24 months but was completed in a record time of only 12 months, that too when there were labour and other issues due to COVID-19. Hundreds of workers got employment in this project during the coronavirus period, he said.

Talking of the Central Vista project, the Prime Minister said “today, when we are focusing on ease of living and ease of doing business, modern infrastructure plays an equally important role in this. This is the spirit at the core of the work being done today related to Central Vista.”

“When the policy and intention is clear, the will is strong and the efforts are sincere, then nothing is impossible, everything is possible. The construction of the country's new Parliament building will also be completed within the stipulated time frame,” Mr. Modi said.

Speaking at the event, Minister for Housing & Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri said that the next Republic Day parade on January 26 would be held at the new Central Vista and the works related to it would be completed in the next few months.

Some of the hutments are over 75 years old and some were stables back then. Referring to this, Mr. Modi questioned: “Today when we are trying to modernise India's military power in every aspect, equipping it with modern weapons, procurement of the army's requirement is accelerating, then the work related to the defence of the country be done in a decades-old manner, how this is possible?”

The existing hutments are spread over an area of 50 acres as against 13 acres for the new complexes. The vacated area will be handed over for the redevelopment project. Defence officials said that the decision on the new complexes was taken around last March and construction began in July/August.

Eco-friendly buildings

Stating that the new buildings were eco-friendly with all amenities, Mr. Modi added that technology had a big role in the speed of construction now. There is also a multi-level car parking for over 1,500 cars at both locations.

The two complexes have a combined area of 9.5 lakh sq.ft. as against 9.22 lakh sq.ft. of the various hutments and buildings to being vacated. Of this, 4.52 lakh sq.ft. is located at the Kasturba Gandhi Marg while the remaining 5.08 lakh sq.ft. is at Africa Avenue. This is the largest office space of the MoD outside South Block.

As part of the Central Vista redevelopment plan, both the heritage buildings of South Block and North Block are also planned to be converted into museums.

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Printable version | Oct 21, 2021 2:23:55 AM |

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