Pink City Jaipur World Heritage Site Now
Pink City Jaipur World Heritage Site now
Pink city Jaipur was formally accorded the status of a world heritage site by UNESCO on February 5, 2020, as the World Heritage Site certificate was handed over to the Urban Development and Housing Minister of Rajasthan by the Director-General of UNESCO.
Founded in 1727 by Sawai Jai Singh II, Jaipur is the capital and largest city of Rajasthan. It is associated with the sobriquet ‘Pink city’ as most buildings in Jaipur were painted in pink in 1876 to welcome the Prince of Wales, Albert Edward. It is also a very popular tourist destination and forms part of the Golden Triangle tourist circuit connecting Delhi and Agra.
Jaipur is home to several architectural marvels including the famous Hawa Mahal, City Palace, Jal Mahal, and Jantar Mantar. The city was designed by Vidhyadhar Bhattacharya who used various principles of Vastu Shastra and Indian arts and crafts to plan the layout.
The walled city is guarded by seven gates that serve as the point of entry and exit. The eastern gate called Suraj pol has images of Sun painted on it and serves as the gateway to the Sun temple of Jaipur. The western gate called Chand pol is an excellent example of Rajputana architecture and provides mesmerizing views of the main bazaar. Dhruv pol, named after Pole star or Dhruv tara, is located at the northern end of the city, and Kishan pol is located at the southern end of the city.
Why Jaipur was chosen by UNESCO?
Jaipur is the fourth Indian city to make it to the UNESCO world heritage site list after Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, and Mumbai. It is also the 38th site in India that has received a world heritage status. The nomination to include it as a world heritage site was received by the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO in 2015 from the Archeological Survey of India. The decision to bestow the title was taken during the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee. As per UNESCO, the manner in which Jaipur city has been planned represents ‘interchange of ancient Hindu, Mughal and contemporary Western ideas’.
UNESCO also observed that Jaipur is a fine example of a late medieval trading town of South Asia that provided novel concepts for a flourishing commercial hub. Compared to the other cities that are located in the hilly terrain of Aravalli, Jaipur has been built as per a distinct grid plan formulated in accordance with Vedic architecture. Furthermore, the city has kept alive the rich tradition of arts and crafts that have gained international fame.
While presenting the UNESCO certificate, Director-General Audrey Azoulay said that UNESCO is committed to preserving the rich heritage of Jaipur for future generations
The state government has announced that a state-level committee was constituted and a special area plan has been formulated to preserve the heritage of Jaipur. 360-degree videography and drone mapping have been carried out for maintaining heritage records. It is expected that the government will also encourage responsible tourism in Jaipur to safeguard its status.