Hoysala temples are India’s nomination for World Heritage tag

February 01, 2022 12:12 am | Updated April 18, 2022 06:26 pm IST - Bengaluru

The Chennakeshava temple in Belur, Hassan district of Karnataka, is in the running for the World Heritage site tag of UNESCO.

The Chennakeshava temple in Belur, Hassan district of Karnataka, is in the running for the World Heritage site tag of UNESCO.

The Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysala — the famed Hoysala temples of Belur, Halebid and Somananthpura in the State — has been finalised as India’s nomination for consideration as World Heritage for 2022-23. These protected monuments are on UNESCO’s tentative list since April 15, 2014, a PIB release on Monday said.

As part of the first step, the dossier to the World Heritage Centre, which will take up technical scrutiny, was submitted by Vishal V. Sharma, Permanent Representative of India to UNESCO, to UNESCO Director of World Heritage Lazare Eloundou on Monday. “India is proud to nominate the Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysalas for UNESCO’s World Heritage List! Art Historians recognise the exceptional sculptural artistry of the ensembles to be among the masterpieces of Asian art,” Mr. Sharma tweeted.

The Hoysala architects used their profound knowledge of temple architecture in different parts of India, and these temples have a basic Dravidian morphology but show strong influences of the Bhumija mode widely used in Central India, the Nagara traditions of Northern and Western India, and the Karnataka Dravida modes favoured by the Kalyani Chalukyas. “Therefore, the Hoysala architects made considered and informed eclectic selections of features from other temple typologies which further modified and then complemented with their own particular innovations. The result was the birth of a completely novel Hoysala temple form,” the PIB release added.

After the submission, UNESCO will communicate back by early March and after that the site evaluation will happen in September/ October 2022. The dossier will be taken up for consideration in July/August 2023, it added.

The temples are protected monuments of the Archaeological Survey of India, and the State Government will ensure the conservation of State protected monuments, which are around these three monuments since it would add to visual integrity of the place. The district Master Plan of the State Government will also incorporate the buffers of all monuments and build an integrated management plan and also look at the traffic management issues, the release said.

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