UNESCO World Heritage Sites In India: Quick Revision For Competitive exams

The places of great Historical, Cultural and Traditional and Natural values are known as Heritage sites. The sites are preserved and conserved by the Archaeological Survey of India which comes under the Ministry of Culture and Heritage, currently headed by hon'ble Minister G Kishan Reddy.

 

In view of India's vast historical background, there are around 3691 monuments and sites of historical importance. Out of these, 40 sites are accredited by UNESCO as world Heritage sites. So let's know what a World Heritage site is?

What is a World Heritage Site?

The sites of outstanding universal value to culture and tradition are called World Heritage sites. The United Nations Education, Science and Cultural organization (UNESCO) has the authoritative Power to designate a site of universal importance as a World Heritage Site. In 1972, UNESCO world heritage convention was held and the signatory countries have a right to nominate sites of cultural and natural importance. India became the signatory of this convention on 14 November 1977.

Types of World Heritage Sites

World Heritage sites are categorized in three types.

Cultural Heritage: It comprises monuments, sculptures, buildings with great archeological styles, geological and physiographical formations including habitats of threatened species of animals and plants, archeological sites etc. 32 out of 40 cultural sites are located in India.

Natural Heritage: Sites which are important from the perspective of Science, conservation of natural beauty are known as Natural heritage sites. 7 out of 40 Natural Heritage sites are located in India.

Mixed Category: Sites which fall under both aforementioned categories are considered mixed types of heritage sites. In India Kanchenjunga National Park is a mixed world Heritage site.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites In India

World Heritage day

World Heritage day has been observed every year on April 18, by the United Nations, since 1983. The day was proposed on 18 April 1982, by the International Council on Monuments and Sites which was approved by the General Assembly of UNESCO in 1983.

The day is commemorated to mark the significant efforts of various organizations working towards the preservation of our valuable heritages.

Theme of World Heritage Day 2022: "Heritage and Climate"

  • World Heritage Sites Facts for UPSC
  • India comes on number 6 with 40 World Heritage sites.
  • The most recent site listed is Dholavira in 2021.
  • Ajanta caves, Ellora caves, Agra fort and Taj Mahal are the first heritage sites to be listed from India in the 1983 session of the World Heritage Committee.
  • Italy has the highest number of world heritage sites,58 followed by China 56 and Germany 51.
  • A total 1,154 world heritage sites have been listed till July 2021 which exist across 167 countries.
  • 26 countries are the signatories of the World Heritage Convention without any World Heritage site.
  • The largest World Heritage site is Phoenix Islands with an area of 408,250 km square.
  • In 1978 a total of 12 sites were designated as World Heritage sites for the first time.
  • In India Maharashtra has 5, the highest number of heritage sites among all states and union territories.
  • India's first UNESCO World Heritage City is Ahmedabad.
  • UNESCO has recognised Nalanda University, Bihar as a World Cultural Heritage site.
  • Darjeeling Himalayan railway (1999), Nilgiri mountain railway (2005), Kalka Shimla railway (2008) and Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Mumbai (2004) are the four Indian railway stations that are recognised as UNESCO's World Heritage sites.

List Of Heritage Sites

ABCD
1
Name of WH SiteState LocationYear of NotificationArea (sq.km)
2
Great Himalayan National Park Conservation AreaHimachal Pradesh2014905.4
3
Western GhatsMaharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala20127953.15
4
Nanda Devi and Valley of Flowers National ParksUttarakhand1988630.00
87.50
5
Sundarbans National ParkWest Bengal19871330.1
6
Kaziranga National ParkAssam1985429.96
7
Keoladeo National ParkRajasthan198528.73
8
Manas Wildlife SanctuaryAssam1985391
ABC
1
Name of WH SiteState LocationYear of Notification
2
Historic City of AhmedabadGujarat2017
3
Archaeological Site of Nalanda Mahavihara (Nalanda University) at NalandaBihar2016
4
The Architectural Work of Le Corbusier, an Outstanding Contribution to the Modern MovementChandigarh2016
5
Rani-ki-Vav (the Queen's Stepwell) at PatanGujarat2014
6
Hill Forts of RajasthanRajasthan2013
7
The Jantar Mantar, JaipurRajasthan2010
8
Red Fort ComplexDelhi2007
9
Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological ParkGujarat2004
10
Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (formerly Victoria Terminus)Maharashtra2004
11
Rock Shelters of BhimbetkaMadhya Pradesh2003
12
Mahabodhi Temple Complex at Bodh GayaBihar2002
13
Mountain Railways of IndiaWest Bengal1999
14
Humayun's TombDelhi1993
15
Qutb Minar and its MonumentsDelhi1993
16
Buddhist Monuments at SanchiMadhya Pradesh1989
17
Elephanta CavesMaharashtra1987
18
Great Living Chola TemplesTamil Nadu1987
19
Group of Monuments at PattadakalKarnataka1987
20
Churches and Convents of GoaGoa1986
21
Fatehpur SikriUttar Pradesh1986
22
Group of Monuments at HampiKarnataka1986
23
Khajuraho Group of MonumentsMadhya Pradesh1986
24
Group of Monuments at MahabalipuramTamil Nadu1984
25
Sun Temple, KonârakOdisha1984
26
Agra FortUttar Pradesh1983
27
Ajanta CavesMaharashtra1983
28
Ellora CavesMaharashtra1983
29
Taj MahalUttar Pradesh1983
30
Victorian and Art Deco Ensemble of MumbaiMaharashtra2018
31
Jaipur CityRajasthan2019
Note: Two new recently added Cultural heritage sites are; Kakatiya Rudreshwara Temple - Telangana - 2021
Dholavira ( A Harappan City) - Gujarat - 2021.
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