Convention for the Protection of the (ICH) Intangible Cultural Heritage – 2003
Recently India has been elected to the Intergovernmental Committee on UNESCO’s Convention for the Protection of Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH)-2003.
There are 24 members in this committee. These members are elected according to the same geographical representation and rotation method.
India has been selected for the period 2022-2026. India has been selected for the third time overall.
Prior to this, India has served as a member of the ICH committee twice, from 2006 to 2010 and 2014 to 2018.
Key functions of the committee:
- Promote the objectives of the Convention, provide guidance on best practices, and make recommendations for the protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
- This committee also examines requests for inclusion of a new heritage in the list of intangible heritage. This committee has also been entrusted with the task of providing international assistance.
Intergovernmental Committee of UNESCO’s 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
It aims to protect intangible heritage along with traditions and vibrant expression.
- Promoting the objectives of the Convention,
- Providing guidance on best practices, and
- Making recommendations on measures for the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage.
- The Committee also examines requests submitted by States Parties for the inscription of intangible heritage on the Lists as well as proposals for programmes and projects.
UNESCO and the Intangible Cultural Heritage of India
- Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) includes traditions or living expressions inherited from our ancestors and passed on to our descendants, such as oral traditions, performing arts, social practices, rituals, festive events, knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe or the knowledge and skills to produce traditional crafts.
- UNESCO was established in the year 1945 to develop “intellectual and moral solidarity of mankind” in the form of lasting peacekeeping.
- UNESCO officially recognizes sites of cultural and natural importance as World Heritage.
- It is worth noting that these places are also important from historical and environmental point of view.
- India has a total of 39 Tangible Heritage Heritage Sites (30 Cultural, 7 Natural and 1 Mixed) and 14 Intangible Cultural Heritages recognized by UNESCO.
- Intangible cultural heritage includes 14 Indian heritages.
- Of these, Durga Puja (2021), Kumbh Mela (2017) and Yoga (2016) have been added later.
Source – The Hindu