5. SHRI RAJEEV CHANDRASEKHAR:
Will the Minister of CULTURE be pleased to state:-
(a) whether Government is aware of the fact that most of the heritage and history of our cities are being lost forever due to rampant and unfettered development; and
(b) if so, the list of cities most affected by this development and the steps proposed to be taken to prevent the same and preserve the heritage of our cities?
MINISTER OF STATE FOR PLANNING AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS
(SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY)
(a)&(b) A statement is laid on the table of the House.
STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN REPLY TO PART (a) AND (b) OF THE RAJYA SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO.5 FOR 2.7.2009
Ancient monuments of historical, archaeological or artistic interest and which have been in existence for not less than 100 years are protected by Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) under the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains (AMASR) Act, 1958 and Rules, 1959. So far 3675 such monuments/sites have been notified for central-protection. In addition about 3500 monuments/sites are under the protection of the various State Governments under their respective legislations. The Town and Country Planning Acts of the States empower their urban and rural local bodies to protect monuments/sites in their respective jurisdictions which are neither under Central nor under State protection. In spite of these legal instruments, a large number of monuments/sites running over a lakh, are unprotected due to various constraints.
Some of the built heritage and antiquarian remains have already disappeared due to hostile weather conditions and pressure of urbanisation. As no comprehensive survey/documentation of all monuments and heritage-sites was undertaken in the past, it is difficult to say as to how many of them have been lost. However, to prepare a comprehensive documentation and data base of all the protected/unprotected monuments and antiquities, the Central Government has launched a National Mission on Monuments and Antiquities. Further, a National Commission for Heritage Site Bill, 2009 has been introduced in the Parliament which, after it is passed, would enable us to fully meet our obligations cast by the UNESCO’s World Heritage Convention, 1972 as well as to protect even the modern architecture of heritage value.
Under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), the Ministry of Urban Development in conjunction with the concerned State Governments has identified 63 cities for the development of basic infrastructure facilities and urban services that also include development of heritage sites. A list of the 63 cities is at the Annexure.
ANNEXURE REFERRED TO IN REPLY TO PART (a) &(b) OF THE RAJYA SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO. 5 FOR 2.7.2009
List of cities identified by JNNURM for the development of basic infrastructure facilities and urban services
Sl. No. City State