The Walled City of Jaipur in Rajasthan is the next proposed site for UNESCO World Heritage recognition, informed Mahesh Sharma, Union Minister for Culture, in Rajya Sabha.
As per UNESCO’s Operation Guidelines 2017, only one site can be nominated each year. “The recognition of World Heritage is a matter of great pride. It impacts the local economy by giving a boost to domestic and international tourism leading to increased employment generation, creation of world class infrastructure and augmentation of sale of local handicrafts, handlooms and heritage memorabilia. Besides, it adds to the prestige of the country as well as the prescribed site,” mentioned Sharma.
There are 37 World Heritage sites in the country at present. These include Agra Fort, Fatehpur Sikri and Taj Mahal in UP, Ajanta Caves, Elephanta Caves and Ellora Caves in Maharashtra. The most recent addition to the list was Victorian and Art Deco Ensembles of Mumbai, which became a World Heritage site this year. In Rajasthan, the hill forts of Chittorgarh, Kumbhalgarh, Jaisalmer are World Heritage Sires, along with Jantar Mantar.