With Santiniketan, Hoysala ensembles inscription, now 42 UNESCO heritage sites in India: ASI : The Tribune India

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With Santiniketan, Hoysala ensembles inscription, now 42 UNESCO heritage sites in India: ASI

Presently, India has sixth largest number of UNESCO sites in the world

With Santiniketan, Hoysala ensembles inscription, now 42 UNESCO heritage sites in India: ASI

The Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysalas has been nominated as a serial property comprising three temples in Karnataka, namely the Channakeshava temple in Belur, the Hoysaleshvara temple in Halebidu and the Keshava temple in Somanathapura. iStock



PTI

New Delhi, September 18

The number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in India has grown to 42 with the ‘Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysala’ finding a place in the coveted list on Monday, the ASI said.

Santiniketan, the famed place in West Bengal where poet Rabindranath Tagore built Visva-Bharati over a century ago, earned the UNESCO tag on Sunday.

The beautiful 13th century temples of the Hoysala dynasty in Karnataka, have been inscribed on the World Heritage list of UNESCO, taking the total number of such sites in India to 42, the Archaeological Survey of India said after UNESCO announced its inclusion.

“This is an occasion for immense joy and celebration for the entire India,” it said in a statement.

With this successful nomination, India has 42 world heritage properties overall, which includes 34 in the cultural category, seven in the natural category and one mixed property, the ASO said.

Presently, India has the sixth largest number of (UNESCO) sites in the world. The countries that have 42 or more world heritage sites are Italy, Spain, Germany, China and France, the statement said.

“It is further added that India has added 12 new world heritage sites since 2014, and this is testimony to the prime minister’s steadfast commitment to promoting Indian culture, heritage and the Indian way of life,” it added.

The Sacred Ensembles of the Hoysalas has been nominated as a serial property comprising three temples in Karnataka, namely the Channakeshava temple in Belur, the Hoysaleshvara temple in Halebidu and the Keshava temple in Somanathapura, reflecting the creative brilliance of the 13th-century architects, the ASI said.

“These temples are a culmination of various temple building traditions prevalent in the northern, central and southern India such as the Nagara, Bhumija and Dravida styles,” it added.

“Hence the inscription of these temples in the World Heritage List is a combined homage to the great temple-building tradition of India. The temples are richly experiential, with their exquisite architecture, sculptures and intricate carvings, reflecting the genius of the sculptors in translating religious beliefs, stories and abstract ideas into the medium of stone,” the ASI said.

The practice of having sculptural panels narrating stories from the Hindu epics and Puranas along the walls of the temple deepening the religious experience of the circumambulation path, was first introduced by the Hoysalas, it said.

“The coming together of the creative genius, architectural eclecticism and symbolism into this outstanding sacred architecture makes these Hoysalas temples, a true work of art and their inscription is truly an honour for India and the entire world heritage community,” the ASI said.

The ASI on Sunday termed the inscription of Santiniketan on the UNESCO World Heritage List a “momentous achievement”.

In a post on X, the ASI said, “A momentous achievement for India as Santiniketan, West Bengal, has been officially inscribed on @UNESCO’s World Heritage List, becoming 41st World Heritage Property of India.”

#West Bengal


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