Maharashtra government to bid for UNESCO status for Ganesh, Dahi Handi, Wari festivals

The state will also pursue World Heritage Site Status for Geoglyphs of coastal Konkan belt of India.
Last Updated : 28 June 2024, 10:53 IST

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Mumbai: In a bid to position Maharashtra as a tourism destination, the government is bidding for gaining UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage status for Pandharpur Wari, Ganeshotsav, Dahi-Handi festival.

The government has already sent a proposal for UNESCO World Heritage Site nominations for a dozen of forts linked to legendary Maratha warrior Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.

The state will also pursue World Heritage Site Status for Geoglyphs of coastal Konkan belt of India.

The plans of the Eknath Shinde- Devendra Fadnavis- Ajit Pawar spearheaded government were mentioned in the Budget 2024-25.

Tabling the budget proposals, Pawar, who is the deputy chief minister and holds the finance portfolio, said, “Devotees from all over Maharashtra flock together to bow before Shri Vitthala, the deity of Maharashtra.

"Palkhi of Jagadguru Sant Tukaram Maharaj is departing from Dehu today. Palkhi of Dyaneshwar Mauli will leave from Alandi tomorrow. This government is aware that Maharashtra's umbilical cord is connected with this Wari of Varkari Bhaktimarga, which has a tradition of about thousand years.”

Pawar said that a proposal has been sent to UNESCO for the World Heritage nomination of Pandharpur wari, which is recognised worldwide as the identity of Maharashtra.

“The government has decided to provide a fund of Rs 20,000  per Dindi (procession) from this year, in gratitude to the lakhs of Varkaris who carry the flag of our tradition on their shoulders,” he said, adding that  Mukhya Mantri Warkari Sampradaya Mahamandal will be established to provide facilities to Kirtankars, Varkari, Bhajani Mandal as well as to manage the Palkhi route. 

Dwelling further, Pawar said: “A proposal has been sent to UNESCO to get a World Heritage nomination for 12 forts of the Shivaji  period. Proposals will also be sent for geoglyphs in Konkan, Pandharpur Wari, Dahi-Handi Utsav and Ganeshotsav.” 

Pawar said that a  submarine tourism project of international stature will be developed at Vengurla in Sindhudurg at an estimated cost of Rs. 66 crore.

An integrated tourism development plan worth Rs 381.56 crore has been approved for the development of tourist spots in the Western Ghat area of Satara district. This includes Sri Kshetra Mahabaleshwar Development, Pratapgad Fort conservation, Sahyadri Tiger Tourism and Koyna-Helwak Forest Tourism projects.

Large number of tourists visit the Malshej Ghat on the Kalyan- Ahmednagar route during monsoon and  modern viewing gallery with all facilities will be set up in this Ghat, he said. 

Works worth Rs. 150 crores have been approved in the first phase and are in Ramtek - which is linked to Lord Ram and In the second phase, works worth Rs 211 crores will be undertaken.

A state-of-the-art international convention center will be set up near the Rajaram Lake in Kolhapur city. A memorial of Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj will be built at Shirala in Sangli.

A memorial of Saint Shri Ruplal Maharaj will be built at his samadhi-sthal at Anjangaon Surji in Amravati. A development plan to the tune of Rs 77 crores will be prepared for memorial of spiritual Guru and social reformer Baba Jumdevji at Pavadauna in Nagpur.

A plan will be prepared for the development of temple premises at Nevasa where Saint Dnyaneshwar Maharaj recited immortal Dnyaneshwari.

Published 28 June 2024, 10:53 IST

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