‘Incredible Treasures’: Volume on UNESCO heritage sites of India to be launched

India at present has 40 World heritage sites, both cultural and natural, including the Ramappa temple, a 13th century engineering marvel in Telangana, and ancient Dholavira site in Gujarat, both of which earned the coveted tag in July this year.

A volume encapsulating the rich cultural treasures of India inscribed on the UNESCO world heritage list is slated to be launched on Friday, officials said. The publication titled, Incredible Treasures, contains rich text illustrated with dazzling photographs, including archival images.

UNESCO and Mapin publishing houses have joined hands for this volume which will be launch on Friday evening in an online event.

India at present has 40 World heritage sites, both cultural and natural, including the Ramappa temple, a 13th century engineering marvel in Telangana, and ancient Dholavira site in Gujarat, both of which earned the coveted tag in July this year.

The project was started in August 2019 and took one year to complete.

As the Ramappa Temple and Dholavira Sites were added to the UNESCO list in July, brochures for these two sites have been added inside pocket with the book, said conservation architect Shikha Jain, who co-edited the volume.

“India is truly incredible and the world heritage sites presented here span the entire history and geography of the country. We believe that this book will be a definitive reference and will help build greater awareness about India’s world heritage sites among specialists and other readers alike.

“We also hope it will encourage them to support efforts to protect and safeguard the world’s cultural and natural heritage,” Eric Falt, UNESCO’s New Delhi Director and representative, was quoted as saying in a statement issued by the world body.

Though the sites across India have been inscribed individually, they collectively contribute to a cohesive historical narrative of India’s extremely diverse archaeological and architectural spectrum as well as natural sites, it said.

The publication offers a stunning view of all world heritage sites of India–two more sites were recently added in July–described together for the first time with informative, accessible commentary and spectacular photographs, the statement said.

India’s world heritage sites spans magnificent structures ranging from the Mughal-era Red Fort in Delhi to the ancient Mahabodhi Temple complex in Bodh Gaya in Bihar, and breathtaking natural sites.

In the 167 countries where they are currently listed, UNESCO’s world heritage sites are landmarks of outstanding historical, cultural and natural significance, the statement said. UNESCO seeks to encourage the identification, protection, and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity.

This is embodied in an international treaty called the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, adopted by UNESCO in 1972.

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