Sept. 18, 2023

Santiniketan, the home of late Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, has been added to the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list.

About Santiniketan:

  • It is located in the state of West Bengal.
  • It was established in 1901 by Rabindranath Tagore.
  • It was a residential school and centre for art based on ancient Indian traditions.
  • In 1921, a ‘world university’ was established at Santiniketan, later recognised as 'Visva Bharati'.
  • Visva-Bharati in Santiniketan is Bengal’s only central university whose chancellor is the Prime Minister.
  • It is distinct from the prevailing British colonial architectural orientations of the early 20th century and of European modernism.
  • It represents approaches toward pan-Asian modernity, drawing on ancient, medieval and folk traditions from across the region.

Key Facts about UNESCO World Heritage

  • A World Heritage Site (WHS) is a landmark or area with legal protection by an international convention administered by UNESCO under the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, established in 1972.
  • These sites are designated by UNESCO for having cultural, historical, scientific or other forms of significance.
  • Categorisation of Sites – The sites are categorised in three types:
    • Cultural heritage sites– It includes historic buildings and town sites, important archaeological sites, and works of monumental sculpture or painting
    • Natural heritage sites– It includes those natural areas that have excellent ecological and evolutionary processes, endangered species etc.
    • Mixed heritage sites– It contain elements of both natural and cultural significance.
  • India has 41 world heritage sites, including 33 cultural properties, 7 natural properties and 1 mixed site.