Karnataka

INTACH begins groundwork eyeing UNESCO world heritage tag for Mysuru

INTACH is confident that Mysuru will qualify for the UNESCO certification as it has a history of art, culture, and architecture that have evolved over the last few centuries.  

The Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) has begun the groundwork to pitch Mysuru as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Both Jaipur and Ahmedabad have been certified as world heritage sites and INTACH is confident that Mysuru will qualify for the UNESCO certification as it has a history of art, culture, and architecture that have evolved over the last few centuries.

However, the process is elaborate and could take years to even reach the nomination stage as the number of monuments from India under the ‘tentative list’ is long. “But the preliminary ground work pertaining to collection of documents to establish the historicity of Mysuru, apart from highlighting its claim as a centre for culture has commenced,” said N.S. Rangaraju, convener, Mysuru chapter of INTACH.

He said this is one of the long-term objectives of INTACH, Mysuru chapter, as it shares lot of similarities with Jaipur which was certified by UNESCO as a world heritage city last year.

Jaipur was recognised for its history of city planning and construction. The same is true of Mysuru which took the lead in establishing an urban planning body in the City Improvement Trust Board in 1904.

Amalgam of styles

Besides, art historians have described Mysuru as an amalgam of different architectural styles as evident in the presence of nearly 250 buildings that have been identified as heritage structures and many of them have been converted to public offices.

If successful, it will help conserve heritage buildings which are on the verge of being dismantled and demolished by realtors, said Prof. Rangaraju. Structures apart, the city continues to be synonymous with culture and traditions and this is also one of the criteria prescribed for recognition as a world heritage centre.

Mysuru satisfies the UNESCO criteria that a city or a region should be directly or tangibly associated with events or living traditions, with ideas, or with beliefs, with artistic and literary works of outstanding universal significance.

“It is not the wealth of built structures of different styles alone but traditions and practices of which Dasara is just one example,” Prof. Rangaraju added.

The city and the region has an unbroken history of encouraging art and culture since historical times and these traditions including folk arts continue to be a part of the live heritage of the people of the region, he said.

INTACH Mysuru will rope in subject experts, including specialists who have worked for the Ahmedabad project, to prepare the documentation. “We would have covered sufficient grounds if not for the pandemic and will take up work once there is a semblance of normalcy,” he said.

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Printable version | May 18, 2021 1:31:46 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/intach-begins-groundwork-eyeing-unesco-world-heritage-tag-for-mysuru/article32847036.ece

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