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Business News/ News / India/  World Heritage Day 2024: Know history, significance and theme. Here are top 5 heritage sites in India

World Heritage Day 2024: Know history, significance and theme. Here are top 5 heritage sites in India

World Heritage Day, known as International Day for Monuments and Sites, is celebrated on April 18 to honor and safeguard our cultural heritage.

Taj Mahal. Premium
Taj Mahal.

World Heritage Day, also monikered as the International Day for Monuments and Sites (IDMS), is observed on April 18 every year to honor and protect out cultural legacy. Historic structures and monuments are global treasures, hence, they need to be nurtured to last for years. On this day, many organizations, societies, governments, and individuals come together to advocate the preservation of historical sites and to increase public awareness about their significance. 

World Heritage Day 2024: History

The International Council for Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) created World Heritage Day, also referred to as The International Day for Monuments and Sites, in 1982. During its 22nd general meeting in 1983, the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization approved the date. 

Experts from a variety of disciplines, including architects, engineers, geographers, civil engineers, artists, and archaeologists, come together annually for ICOMOS. These experts work together to protect some of the most stunning locations and significant monuments for future generations.

ICOMOS has welcomed about 10,000 members from more than 150 countries since it was found. Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysalas and Santiniketan, two new Indian sites, were added to the list in 2023.

World Heritage Day 2024: Significance

The purpose of World Heritage Day is to raise awareness among local communities about protecting our cultural heritage. People from various places and backgrounds come together and exchange knowledge about their histories and customs. In addition, ICOMOS commemorates the day by working with UNESCO all across the world, drawing tourists and history buffs to such events.

World Heritage Day 2024: Theme

This year, the theme of World Heritage Day is ‘Discover and Experience Diversity’.

Top 5 heritages sites in India

1) Taj Mahal: The monument, which was built in Agra between 1631 and 1648 by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, is entirely composed of white marble. It was constructed in honor of the emperor's beloved wife. 

2) Ajanta Caves: The first and second century B.C. saw the creation of the oldest Buddhist cave structures at Ajanta. Considered masterpieces, the sculptures and paintings in Ajanta have greatly influenced artists.

3) Khajuraho: The Chandela dynasty ruled over Khajuraho between 950 and 1050 when the temples were built. Currently, there are only about 20 temples symbolizing Jainism and Hinduism that are still surviving.

4) Jaipur City: Jaipur, founded by Sawai Jai Singh II in 1727, is renowned for its distinctive urban design that draws inspiration from Vedic architecture. The pink city was constructed on level ground, but others were built on hills. Locals have managed to maintain its rich history to this day.

5) Hampi: The Vijayanagara Empire's last capital was Hampi. Ancient travelers were in awe of the splendid temples and palaces built by the rich emperors. But the Deccan Muslim confederacy took control of the city in 1565, and it was abandoned.

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Published: 18 Apr 2024, 08:56 AM IST
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