India’s new parliament building is set to be inaugurated on Sunday, May 28. Commissioned in 1927, the current Parliament House building has been operating for almost 100 years. Over the decades, some issues with the current building have become more apparent. These include limited seating capacity during joint sessions, outdated tech for communication, and deteriorating infrastructure. The new Parliament building has been developed under the Central Vista project and comes decked with state-of-the-art features. Let’s take a quick look.
The new Parliament Building is bigger, better, and integrated with cutting-edge tech
The new seat of Indian democracy will have a built-up area of about 65,000 sq. mt. Its triangular shape will ensure that this area is utilised optimally. The biggest functional upgrade that comes with the new building is the extended seating capacity. The Lok Sabha hall will now be able to seat 888 members while the Rajya Sabha hall has a capacity of 384 members. For joint sessions, the Lok Sabha hall can accommodate up to 1,272 seats. The hall for the lower house has a peacock theme while the upper house is based on a lotus theme.
Architectural attributes aside, the new Parliament Building will also feature new communication tech for both houses. Large display screens and AV systems will adorn the walls of either house. But what’s more interesting is the touchscreen display on every MP’s desk. These display units will support biometric features, allowing the MPs to vote on bills directly from their seats. The microphones along with real-time translation tech have also received substantial upgrades.
What’s more impressive is the digitisation of the entire Parliament archives. These files will help MPs in researching for debates, allowing them to search entries for a particular subject, time period, speaker, and more. These archives will be accessible from the smart displays in the seating of either hall.
Parliamentary proceedings in the new building will be transcribed in real time using AI-based speech-to-text. The algorithm is tuned to detect different languages, dialects, and accents. The transcription will be automatically tagged and indexed with appropriate time stamps. A similar auto-tagging feature could also be employed for audio-visual recordings. This will allow members to easily look up a certain section of a speech or a debate by entering the relevant keyword.
A mobile application for the new Parliament is also in the works under the ‘Digital Sansad’ Project. This app will keep the MPs updated about the daily parliamentary schedule and also give them access to confidential files along with the archives. After its inauguration tomorrow, the new Parliament building will host the Winter Session later this year. The current building will also remain functional and will work in conjunction with the new structure.
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