Narendra Nayak, a philatelist from Udupi, displayed a collection of 300 stamps on the subject of world heritage sites at the monthly meeting of the Dakshina Kannada Numismatic and Philately Association (DKPNA) held in the city on Sunday. The stamps were about places in India which had been recognised as heritage sites by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) sites.

The stamps included one from Sri Lanka with an error. It was withdrawn after it was issued. The stamp has a map of Sri Lanka and India highlighting places of importance to Buddhism. It mentions Gaya, Sarnath, Kushinagar, and Lumbini as being in India. While the first three named are in India, Lumbini is in Nepal and not India.

The other stamps in the collection included the Jantar Mantar of Jaipur, Kaziranga National Park, Fatehpur Sikri of Agra, Humayun's Tomb, Red Fort, Pattadakal, and the Rampur Raza Library in Uttar Pradesh. Although Mr. Nayak had been collecting stamps since childhood, the set of stamps based on the Unesco theme had been collected over the past one year. Narrating the incident that spurred him into collecting such stamps, he said he was walking on Malpe beach when a Dutch couple asked him where they could see Unesco sites in India.

He was sure Taj and Hampi figured and he mentioned those names. He browsed the internet for the subject and realised that India had 28 Unesco sites. Of that number, 23 were culture sites and the rest were nature-based. Mr. Nayak said that there were still two places that were on the Unesco list but had no stamps issued on them — Bhimbetka Caves in Madhya Pradesh and Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park.

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