Iranian heritage expert Dr Adel Farhangi Shabestari, who is on a three-day visit to Ahmedabad for technical evaluation of the city which aspires to get the World Heritage City tag, told the city’s stakeholders that the tag will entail more challenges. Shabestari, the UNESCO expert team member from International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), said this at an interactive session with stakeholders associated with the city’s heritage, in Ahmedabad on Friday. Shabestari leaves the city on Saturday morning.
While Dr Shabestari shared that he had learnt many things from the over 600-year-old city, its culture and heritage, he wanted to get a more “closer” feedback on all the challenges faced by different stakeholders and possible suggestions that could be implemented to overcome these. Also, he wanted to know how strongly these stakeholders could vouch for the heritage city tag, its importance and future challenges.
“He urged all stakeholders to share the challenges they have faced. For instance, he wanted to have a feedback on how this vibrant and mega city would be managed, what are the management plans, how private property owners would be made a part of this entire movement,” said one of the participants. Another participant said, “The major concern of the expert was how the city has been managed and how it will be taken forward and managed once the heritage city tag is awarded to Ahmedabad. He pointed out that there will be more challenges after the tag.”
Non-government ogranisation SEWA, officials from the Archeological Survey of India (ASI), Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC), police department, prominent architects, organisations and individuals who have contributed to preservation and restoration of the city’s heritage were a part of the interactive session.
On Friday, Dr Shabestari, along with the ASI team, went on the heritage walk and also visited Gandhi Ashram. During his three-day visit, he had visited heritage sites and ASI-protected monuments, like Bhadra Fort and Ahmad Shah Mosque, along with the city’s oldest residential areas, pols.