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A new Thal Sena Bhawan, mix of modernity and efficiency

by Rishika Choudhury

Date & Time: Nov 03, 2022 8:00 AM

Read Time: 3 minute

The 'Dharma Chakra' on top of the six-story Thal Sena Bhawan to make it visible from a distance, new modern offices for Army officers in an all-green building, a massive gymnasium, a Thal Sena sunken garden for recreation and celebrations, and a special ceremonial walkway for events — the Indian Army's new headquarters will have all of this and much more.

The government invited tenders for the construction of the Indian Army's new headquarters in Delhi Cantonment, the Thal Sena Bhawan, at a cost of Rs 757 crore. It is specified that the project will be completed in 27 months.

This comes over two years after Defence Minister Rajnath Singh laid the foundation stone of the project in February 2020. The Military Engineering Services (MES) has invited the bids now, saying the firm which will build the project in 27 months will continue to maintain and operate it for the following five years.

According to the document, it should be a high-quality construction that maximises sustainability concepts, with GRIHA IV compliance obtained in light of all-green building norms. The most recent and modern construction technologies will be used, maximising the natural surroundings and attributes to the greatest extent possible 
while completing the project on time and on budget.

Headquarter will be visible from far away

The top of the six-story building will feature a 'Dharma Chakra.' "The iconic building itself is planned to be visible from afar," the document says, adding that the site's edges will be a strong element in proclaiming the grandness of the site.

The building will house modern offices for officers of the highest Army ranks, including Lt. General, Major General, and Brigadier. A separate four-story structure called the Infrastructure Complex Hall will be constructed, as well as a large gymnasium for officers and a central library. The lodging complex will be a separate structure.

Abutting the main building will be an expansive arena of spaces for recreation as well as celebration. “The Thal Sena sunken garden is planned with steps to function as seating areas. A 9m wide processional path is aimed to serve as a ceremonial walkway for Army events. This is flanked by a display garden with plazas planned to serve as spaces for the display of Army artefacts,” the document has elaborated.

The project received environmental approval earlier this year. Because of its proximity to the Indira Gandhi International Airport, the maximum height of buildings permitted on the site is limited. The Airports Authority of India has imposed a height restriction of 282.49 metres on such multi-story buildings.

The new building, located opposite Manekshaw Centre in Delhi Cantonment, will be spread across 39 acres and will bring together the offices of the Army headquarters spread across New Delhi inside a single building, improving efficiency and streamlining logistical requirements.

As per the Army, Army Headquarters is located across South Block, Sena Bhawan, Hutments Area, RK Puram, and Shankar Vihar, among others. The Army had said about 7.5 lakh sqm of area will be constructed for the office complex and parking and 6,014 offices will be constructed, which will include offices for 1,684 officers — and 4,330 sub-staff. It will also comprise a residential area for security personnel and include other basic amenities.

Also Read: PM Modi launches NIRYAT Portal to Access Export Records and inaugurated Vanijya Bhawan

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