The 600-year-old Walled City in Gujarat’s commercial capital Ahmedabad was formally accorded status of India’s first World Heritage City by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
In this regard, UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova handed over certificate declaring it as ‘World Heritage City’ to Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani in Gandhinagar. The status recognises heritage value of walled city’s unique heritage.
Walled city of Ahmedabad
The walled city of Ahmedabad was founded in the 15th century by Ahmed Shah of Gujarat Sultanate. It is situated on the eastern bank of Sabarmati River. It presents rich architectural heritage from sultanate period, notably the Bhadra citadel, walls and gates of Fort city and numerous mosques and tombs, as well as important Hindu and Jain temples of later periods. It has 28 Archaeological Survey of India’s centrally protected monuments. The 5.5 km walled city area has approximate population of four lakh living in century old wooden residences in around 600 pols or neighbourhoods
The walled city of Ahmedabad is first city in India to get World Heritage City status and third in Asia after Bhaktapur (Nepal) and Galle (Sri Lanka). India now has total 36 World Heritage Inscriptions 28 cultural, 7 natural and 1 mixed site. India is second after China in terms of number of world heritage properties in Asia and Pacific (ASPAC) region, and overall seventh in world.
World Heritage Cities Programme
It is one of six thematic programmes formally approved and monitored by World Heritage Committee (WHC) of UNESCO. It aims to assist state parties in the challenges of protecting and managing their urban heritage sites.