The Department of Archaeology will propose cultural affairs ministry to submit the names of eight sites, including the National Parliament complex, to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation for the sites’ inscription on the tentative list of World Heritage Site.
The department presented the list of eight sites having outstanding universal value on Wednesday at its Agargaon office in presence of the state minister for cultural affairs, KM Khalid.
The sites are National Parliament complex, Mughal Forts of Dhaka, Archaeological Settlements on Littoral Landscapes of Southwestern part of Bangladesh, Brick-built Mughal Mosques in Bangladesh, Mughal and Colonial Brick Temples in Bangladesh, Cultural Landscape of Mahasthan and Karatoya River, Archaeological sites and landscape of Lalmai-Mainamati and the Architectural work of Muzharul Islam.
The list was made from 61 proposals submitted to the department as part of its $ 43,175 (Tk 36,58,799) project initiated for updating the tentative list of Bangladesh heritage sites, the department’s deputy director Md Amiruzzaman said.
‘We will send the proposed list with detailed information and visual documents, which will provide their outstanding universal values, to the ministry in March to propose for their inscription on UNESCO’s tentative list,’ he added.
A year after the inscription on the tentative list, he said, a site could be applied for enlisting on the World Heritage List with more detailed information in the prescribed format.
At present, Historic Mosque City of Bagerhat (1985), Ruins of the Buddhist Vihara at Paharpur (1985) and The Sundarbans (1997) are inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.
The Sundebans, under the nature category, faces the threat of relegating to World Heritage Sites in Danger for several man-made interventions such as establishment of factories and power plants near the forest.
Archaeology Department made the previous list in 1999 but none of those was inscribed on the UNESCO’s World Heritage List, said the department officials.
They added that they were still pursuing three proposals following their modifications in its latest list published on Wednesday to meet up the amended requirements that UNESCO set down in past 20 years.
State minister for cultural affairs asked all officials to work with integrity for inscription of the proposed sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage Site.
Cultural affairs ministry secretary M Badrul Arefin and UNESCO Representative to Bangladesh Beatrice Kaldun, among others attended the meeting through videoconferencing.
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