Context: Recently during the Lok Sabha session the Minister of State (I/c) of Culture and Tourism informed the house about World Heritage sites in India.
The World Heritage Convention:
- The most significant feature of the 1972 World Heritage Convention is that it links together in a single document the concepts of nature conservation and the preservation of cultural properties.
- The Convention sets out the duties of States Parties in identifying potential sites and their role in protecting and preserving them.
- By signing the Convention, each country pledges to conserve not only the World Heritage sites situated on its territory, but also to protect its national heritage.
- It explains how the World Heritage Fund is to be used and managed and under what conditions international financial assistance may be provided.
- The Convention stipulates the obligation of States Parties to report regularly to the World Heritage Committee on the state of conservation of their World Heritage properties.
- The overarching benefit of ratifying the World Heritage Convention is that of belonging to an international community of appreciation and concern for universally significant properties that embody a world of outstanding examples of cultural diversity and natural wealth.
About World Heritage committee:
- The World Heritage Committee meets once a year, and consists of representatives from 21 of the States Parties to the Convention elected by their General Assembly. At its first session, the Committee adopted its Rules of Procedure of the World Heritage Committee.
- The Committee is responsible for the implementation of the World Heritage Convention.
- It defines the use of the World Heritage Fund and allocates financial assistance upon requests from States Parties.
- It has the final say on whether a property is inscribed on the World Heritage List.
- It also decides on the inscription or deletion of properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
- The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) based in Paris, France.
- Its declared purpose is to contribute to promoting international collaboration in education, sciences, and culture in order to increase universal respect for justice, the rule of law, and human rights along with fundamental freedom proclaimed in the United Nations Charter.
- It is the successor of the League of Nations' International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation.
- UNESCO's aim is "to contribute to the building of peace, the eradication of poverty, sustainable development and intercultural dialogue through education, the sciences, culture, communication and information".
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