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Timings : 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM (Closed on weekends and public holidays)

Time Required : 1-2 hrs

Entry Fee : No entry fee

Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore Overview

Described by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru as 'a temple dedicated to the nation', Vidhana Soudha houses the State Legislature and the Secretariat of Karnataka and is one of the most popular attractions in the lively and colourful city of Bengaluru. It also proudly boasts the title of being the largest state legislative building in the country. With four entrances in all four directions and four floors above the ground level and one below it, we surely don't doubt the title. Popularly known as the 'Taj Mahal of South India', it is counted as one of the most magnificent buildings in the city and is sure to impress the onlooker with its sophisticated poise and glorified grandiose. The entire monument is illuminated on Sundays and public holidays and is a sight for sore eyes.

Then Prime Minister Sri Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru along with then Chief Minister K.C. Reddy laid down the first brick of this establishment on 13 July 1951 and initiated the construction of a monument that symbolizes the legislative sovereignty of the people of the country. Its construction took a good five years and it was finally inaugurated in 1956 to become the largest legislative building in India. Constructed under the shadow of Sri. Kengal Hanumanthaiya's extensive knowledge and unmatched expertise, the Vidhana Soudha stands 150 feet tall and boasts of an elegant and truly exquisite Neo-Dravidian style of architecture. Looking at this magnanimous structure and staring into its unflinching prowess enlightens you of how the marvel is worth every single penny, and more, spent to build it.

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Construction of Vidhana Soudha

Sprawling across an area of 60 acres, the Vidhan Soudha exhibits a glorified and exuberant Neo-Dravidian architecture style with splashes of Indo-Saracenic architecture sprucing up the place with sheer elegance. Surrounded by lush green manicured lawns, the structure consists of four upper levels and one basement housing a total of 172 rooms and is built purely out of granite and porphyry. The floor area spans its reach across almost 47,000 square meters!

Embellishing the entrance of the building is the four-headed lion, the national symbol of our country. One of the most attractive elements of the Vidhan Soudha's interiors are the grand stairs that lead up to the foyer. Forty-five steps, 200 feet wide and 70 feet deep, climb directly up to the foyer that opens up to the large Assembly Chamber.  The Assembly Hall looks extremely majestic with twenty columns, each forty feet tall, adorning its entrance. The central dome is supported by eight granite columns that are each have a diameter of 60 feet making the roof of the State Banquet Hall. The dome is also crowned with the Indian National Emblem.

An artistic blend of modern and ancient architecture, the Vidhan Soudha comprises richly carved bases and capitals for pillars, kapotha cornices, chaithya arches and deep freizes. An interesting fact about the construction of this monument is that it was built by 5000 unskilled workers, all of whom were convicts. All these convicts turned labourers were given freedom once the construction was completed. Besides the labourers, the monument required the undivided attention of 1500 chiselers, masons and wood carvers.

Vidhana Soudha Lighting

The entire structure of the Vidhan Soudha is lit up with a million colourful lights on Sunday evenings and on special occasions. Thousands of tourists flock to witness this remarkable light show, a show with numerous vibrant lights enlightening the structure and colourful spotlights shooting across the sky. This spectacular sight can only be witnessed during evening time between 6:30 PM and 8:00 PM.

The city has proposed to light up the Vidhana Soudha for two hours every day since it is such a popular attraction that draws the attention of many tourists around the year. Bearing in mind the power shortages faced by many parts of the country, the light show is planned to be run entirely on solar energy!

Slogan of Vidhana Soudha

At the entrance of this magnificent monument is richly carved "Government's work is God's work" and its Kannada equivalent. The Mysore government showed intent in 1957 to change this slogan to "Satyamev Jayate", which means "The Truth Always Prevails". This would have costed INR 7500, which was not a very small figure then. Eventually, they decided to keep the slogan untouched and so it is.

When US State Governor of Ohio, George Voinovich, visited the Vidhana Soudha in 1996, he noticed the inscription and was inspired by it. He decided to etch, "With God, all things are possible" at the entrance of the Ohio State House, and this prompted a high-profile lawsuit.

Annual Maintenance Cost of Vidhana Soudha

The annual cost of maintaining this enormous structure is a whopping 20 million rupees! That is actually more than what it cost when it was built- 17.5 million rupees. These annual expenses include repairs, maintenance, painting and other miscellaneous expenses and definitely important to keep this beautiful structure looking as good as new even after 50 long years of wear and tear.

Tips For Visiting Vidhana Soudha

Special permission must be taken to visit the interiors of the buildings due to the security reasons. You should take care of them while visiting the place.

How To Reach Vidhana Soudha

The Bangalore Railway Station is only 5 km away from Vidhana Soudha, which is barely a 25 to 30-minute commute. The nearest bus stop is Kempegowda Bus Station, or popularly known as Majestic Bus Station and is only 2.1 kms away from this bus stop. Being a busy bus route, a lot of buses ply to and from the Majestic Bus Station.

It is very easy to find a cab or an auto rickshaw in the city that will take you to Vidhana Soudha in a speedy manner and at economical rates. If travelling by metro, get down on the Vidhan Soudha metro station and cover the rest of the distance either on foot or hire an auto rickshaw available outside the metro station.

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