The government is planning to shift the National Museum of Natural History in central Delhi to a new building at a cost of Rs 225 crore in the aftermath of a fire that broke out early on Tuesday.
The conceptual work is in progress and a committee has been formed for the purpose, an environment ministry official said.
The ministry has been allotted 6.5 acres of land behind Purana Quila near Pragati Maidan for shifting the museum, an official statement said.
The museum is located in the FICCI compound, adjacent to the auditorium at the Tansen Marg. Fire officials said that the auditorium was saved from damage.
Set up in 1972 and opened for public in 1978, the museum functions under the ministry of environment and forests.
“The work of consultancy for preparation of detailed concept plan has been finalised. Statutory clearances from different agencies will be obtained after finalisation of Land Use Change (LUC) and DPR (detailed project report),” the statement said.
The proposal for LUC for allotted land will be considered on April 27 by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung will chair the meeting, it added.
An environment ministry official said: “In-principle approval of allocation of funds from NITI Aayog/ministry of finance will be taken by October 31, 2016. The tentative programme for completion of the project is February 28, 2017.”
The move comes after a blaze at the museum, which has exhibits of animals and plants. The design of the building posed a challenge to the firefighters, an official said.
Environment minister Prakash Javadekar ordered an energy and fire audit of all establishments of the ministry located across the country after visiting the museum.
Former minister Jairam Ramesh said he had tried twice to relocate the museum. He added the present location was “not right”.