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Special session: Emotional moment to leave old Parliament, says PM Modi

Parliament special session: Modi said that while foreign rulers had decided to build the structure, it was constructed by the hard work, sweat and money of the people of India

PM Modi in Lok Sabha

Photo: PTI

BS Web Team New Delhi

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It is an emotional moment to leave the old building of the Parliament as several bittersweet memories have been associated with it, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday. He said that the building will continue to inspire many generations to come. From September 19, the sessions of the Parliament will be held in its new building. 

On the first day of the five-day special session of the Parliament, Modi initiated the discussion in Lok Sabha on the "Parliamentary Journey of 75 years starting from Samvidhan Sabha -- Achievements, Experiences, Memories and Learnings".

He said that while foreign rulers had decided to build the structure, it was constructed by the hard work, sweat and money of the people of India. "Before Independence, this building was called the Imperial Legislative Council. After Independence, it became Parliament building," he said.

"We may go to the new building, but the old building will also inspire generations to come," the PM noted, adding that this is an important chapter of India's journey.

Modi said that several decisions that shaped India post-independence were taken in this building. "Post-Independence, many expressed doubts about the country's success. But the power of this Parliament proved naysayers wrong."

He added that despite debates and discussions, the environment of a family in the Parliament has remained. "Even when we meet years after retiring from the Parliament, we do not forget the affection."

Talking about the members of the Parliament, PM Modi said that the number of women MPs may have been low earlier, but gradually their representation is increasing. He said that to date, over 7,500 members have participated in both houses, and 600 out of these have been women.

PM Modi also said that today is the day to praise the previous PMs, from Jawaharlal Nehru to Manmohan Singh. Modi also recalled Jawaharlal Nehru and Atal Bihari Vajpayee's iconic speeches.

"'At the stroke of midnight hour' still echoes loudly in the Parliament," he said. 

Modi also praised the speakers of the Lok Sabha and said that all of them have run the business of the house in their own way but have ensured that all rules have been followed. "All of them have run the Parliament ably," he said. He also appreciated the efforts of chamber attendants, house officials and gardeners.

Remembering the 2001 attack on the Parliament, Modi said that it was targeted at the existence of India. He praised the guards who laid down their lives to defend India's "temple of democracy".

Moreover, Modi also praised and congratulated the journalists who have reported on the workings of the Parliament.

"Even when we cannot recall the names of such journalists, their contribution cannot be forgotten...the reflection in their writings is similar to the strength of the walls of this building," he said.

On the success of Chandrayaan-3, PM Modi congratulated the scientists and their families.

"Chandrayaan-3's success is being lauded by the whole country and is a new show of India's technical and scientific capability...It will generate a new impact on the whole country and the world."

On the G20 Summit, PM Modi said that the federal structure, diversity, and different governments of the country welcomed the guests. "It is something for everyone to celebrate," Modi noted.

"The success of the G20 is that of 140 crore Indians. It is the success of India, not that of a person or a party," he said.

In October, India will hold the P20 summit for speakers in the Parliament of the G20 nations. Modi told Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla that he will have "full support" from the government.

Earlier, as the Parliament session began, Birla lauded PM Modi's "visionary" leadership for the success of the G20 Summit. Birla said Modi's "vision and guidance" led to a consensus on sensitive issues in the New Delhi Declaration issued by the G20 leaders.

"It is time to remember inspirational moments associated with this Parliament building before we move to new premises," Modi said.

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First Published: Sep 18 2023 | 12:33 PM IST

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