BJP government withdraws nomination for UNESCO world heritage city, saying it could hamper development.
by Al Jazeera
India’s government has withdrawn Delhi’s nomination for UNESCO world heritage city over concerns that it would have hampered “infrastructure and construction” plans in the capital.
The government decision came nearly a month before UNESCO was to review nominations from across the world. There are 38 other entries that will be examined by the UN body in the German city of Bonn between June 28 and July 8.
“Once the city comes into that heritage list, you are unable to make some construction in the city plans and land use plans, so it will become difficult. With that view the government has taken a decision to withdraw the nomination,” Mahesh Sharma, India’s culture minister, told the local NDTV news channel.
The previous government had filed the initial nomination in 2012 and the final dossier, prepared by the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH), was sent in January last year.
People on social media criticised the government move as Delhi’s heritage sites lure tourists from across the world.
— David Kaner (@DavidKaner) May 22, 2015
If urban development means not safeguarding the past its unfortunate. A UNESCO heritage city tag to Delhi wld have helped preserve it
— Rana Safvi رعنا राना (@iamrana) May 22, 2015
The old quarters of Delhi, which was the seat of power during the Muslim rule and Lutyens area that was developed by the British colonialists, have dozens of heritage buildings.