Six hill forts in Rajasthan get World Heritage label

Unesco's first ever selection as serial cultural property

Six hill forts of Rajasthan find a place in the Unesco World Heritage List. These are Amber, Chittorgarh, Gangron, Jaisalmer, Kumbhalgarh and Ranthambore.

Tourism, art and culture minister Bina Kak informed that the hills forts were approved at the 37th meeting of the World Heritage Committee in Pnom Penh, Cambodia on Friday. The selection of the forts as a serial cultural property is the first of its kind ever by Unesco, she said.

The minister said the six forts will receive enhanced international recognition the way the Jantar Mantar in Jaipur did after it was included in the World Heritage List in 2010.
The selection will also pave way for other monuments to be nominated for being included in the World Heritage List.

In fact, the work relating to stepwells of Abhaneri, Bandikui, Bundi and the fresco paintings of Shekhawati region for being submitted for consideration to Unesco list has already started. All these efforts will reinforce positioning of Rajasthan on the world tourism map as a favoured tourist destination, said the minister.

It is to be recalled that several missions of International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) an advisory body to the Unesco visited Rajasthan since 2011 and discussed the nomination in great detail with State Archaeology Department, ASI and the Indian Advisory Committee on the World Heritage under the ministry of culture.

ICOMOS report recognises the outstanding universal value of hill forts with following statement “Within the State of Rajasthan, six extensive and majestic hill forts together reflect the elaborate, fortified seats of power of Rajput princely states that flourished between the 8th and 18th centuries and their relative political independence. The extensive fortifications up to 20 kilometres in circumference optimised various kinds of hilly terrain, specifically the river at Gagron, the dense forests at Ranthambore, and the desert at Jaisalmer and exhibit important phase of development of an architectural typology based on established traditional Indian principles.”

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