A team of experts will visit Hoysala temples this week

A team of experts, including a representative of the International Commission on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), and other officials will visit Hoysala temples in Belur, Halebid and Somanathpur this week before submitting a report to UNESCO ahead of declare them world heritage. To place.

The team is made up of Tiang Kian Boom, ICOMOS expert; Janwij Sharma, Additional Director General of the Archaeological Survey of India, and Madan Singh Chouhan, Director, World Heritage (ASI), and will be in the state from September 13-17.

The team will arrive in Bengaluru on September 13 and will visit the 12th century Chennakeshava temple at Belur on September 14, the Hoysaleshwara temple (12th century) at Halebid on the 15th and the 13th century Keshava temple at Somanathpur on September 16. The team will devote a full day to each of the monuments before departing for Bangalore for a discussion with the Chief Secretary on September 17.

Devaraju, director of the Department of Archaeology, Museums and Heritage, said the team would record their observations and discuss with the chief secretary, then submit a report to UNESCO. “We are confident that the monuments will be declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site by May 2023,” Devaraju said.

The temples of Belur, Halebid and Somanathpur are India’s official nominations for UNESCO World Heritage listing, and Belur and Halebid have been on the tentative list since 2014 as ‘the Sacred Groups of Hoysalas’.

Somnathapur has been included under the serial nomination process which provides for the inclusion of new sites in the same category as long as they share the same characteristics. In addition, it must meet the UNESCO criteria of displaying Outstanding Universal Value.

Although it was initially proposed to unite 14 Hoysala temples and group them for serial nominations, the experts who worked on the detailed project report decided to include only the Keshava temple of Somanathpur temple in the nomination. initial of the monuments of Belur and Halebid. It has been argued that once the site management plans for the other temples are ready, the World Heritage tag could also be sought for them through the serial nomination process.

Meanwhile, heritage sites have been revamped ahead of the expert team’s visit and the temple at Somanathpur has new amenities including toilets. In the future, the authorities also plan to have a host of facilities, including traffic signs, some of which will appear in due course.

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