Varanasi and Shantiniketan have been chosen as the two main projects by the Spanish government as it signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH),a non-profit organization working for heritage preservation to fund the two projects.
As part of the MoU,the Spanish government has signed up INTACH to work on a proposal to develop Varanasi as a World Heritage City and also renovate the museum at Shantiniketan. The MoU was signed today by INTACH and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (MFAC) of Spain in New Delhi.
The MoU has been signed for general cooperation in heritage preservation and exchange of ideas and resources. However,the Varanasi and Shantiniketan projects have been additionally assigned as the Spanish government has decided to fund both the projects, said Yogender Narain,member secretary of the INTACH.
Varanasi is one of the unique cities of the world and it needs to be preserved. I have lived there for over 16 years and have a personal bond with the city. It has great beauty and this should be preserved and protected, said lon De la Riva Guzman de Frutos,the Spainish ambassador to India.
A team of experts from Spain and INTACH will visit Varanasi and Shantiniketan to assess the areas of conservation and draw up a plan for preservation.
In Shantiniketan,the INTACHs material heritage division has been working to restore the paintings and artifacts of the museum and the project is sanctioned by the Ministry of Culture.