World Heritage Convention & Heritage Sites

Qutub Minar (New Delhi, India)

One of the most popular conventions of UNESCO, the 1972 Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage provides an effective guideline for the Member States to develop and implement policy framework for conservation of heritage properties.  Since the inception of the Convention, the definition of heritage has expanded from that of monument and archaeological  site to include living cities and cultural landscape.  In this new context, heritage management is no more an isolated discipline of just restoring and conserving  physical buildings but it is part of urban regeneration.  It is no more about preserving the past but to manage the changes to respond to the need of the cities to evolve.  

UNESCO New Delhi office, through its network of heritage experts, provides technical support to the State parties to the Convention to meet this complex challenge of heritage preservation.    

The World Heritage Convention in South-Asia :

  • India ratified the Convention in 1977.  It has 32 World Heritage properties in the World Heritage List, as well as 46 properties in the Tentative List. The country was a member of the World Heritage Committee on three occasions: 1985-1991, 2001-2007 and 2011-2015.
  • Bhutan is Member State to the Convention since 2001. It has 8 properties in the Tentative List.  
  • Sri Lanka ratified the Convention in 1980 and has 8 properties in the World Heritage List and two properties in the Tentative List. The country was a member of the World Heritage Committee between 1983 and 1989. 
  • Maldives ratified the Convention in 1986 and has one property in the Tentative List.

                                                                              (Data as of July 2015)

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