Government chalks out plan to get Unesco heritage Jaipur status

JAIPUR: As the has been placed on the tentative list for World Heritage City by for its outstanding universal value, the state administration has chalked out a strategic plan to bag the title.
On Monday, a meeting was called by the local self-department (LSG), where civic bodies were directed to remove encroachments from all the heritage sites including , Jaleb Chowk, Isarlat and other Walled City areas.

(JMC) CEO Ravi Jain said, “A team from UNESCO will visit the Walled City area in September. Directions have been issued to maintain the heritage structures in the Walled City area. Moreover, work to restore the façade around the Walled City is underway. Directions have been issued not to tamper with the originality of such structures,” he said.

As Jaipur stands unique as a culmination of various architectural styles and an amalgamation of cultures in a unique 18th century town plan form, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) in 2015 had submitted a proposal to the UNESCO demanding status of Jaipur city as World Heritage City.

The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), a formal advisory body to the World Heritage Committee constituted by UNESCO, this year had urged Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to the inspect the Walled City in September. The team will visit Jaipur for five-days for inspection.

An official said, “The heritage Walled City of Jaipur, spread in a two square km area within a well-defined city wall and nine city gates, boasts of magnificent architecture and is one of the most renowned planned cities of India. We are hopeful of bagging a tag,” he said.

It was further informed, there are several reasons for the nomination, the Walled City, is an expression of the astronomical skills, historical values, unique urban form and exemplary foresighted city planning. The grid iron planning of the city was very advanced for its times and certainly recognised as one of the best in the Indian subcontinent by many foreign travellers in the 18th and 19th centuries.

While the grid iron pattern of planning has been used historically in city planning, its application at such a monumental scale for a planned trade city along with peculiar urban form makes it stand out as one of its kind in the history of urban planning of the Indian subcontinent.

Though enclosed by city walls and protected by a range of forts on its surrounding hills, the city of Jaipur was conceived not just as the military retreat of feudal warlords but as a commercial city, a business centre of thriving enterprise.

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