Bagging another project of international reputation,the CEPT University has been awarded the Demonstration Programme for Heritage Management in Indian Cities. Implemented by the World Bank at the request of Department of Economic Affairs,Ministry of Finance,this programme is anchored by the Ministry of Urban Development.
The programme that will cover three pilot cities – Ajmer-Pushkar (Rajasthan),Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) and Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh) – has been taken off this week with the field trips by CEPT team members to these cities. It aims at providing national policy makers including the state governments and urban local bodies with practices,institutional arrangements as well as financial and management incentives that can assist them in incorporating cultural heritage into their overall city development planning framework.
It was realised that cities are not able to cope up with rapid urbanisation. This has resulted in a major setback to the cities with a heritage legacy. For instance,Pushkar witnesses millions of visitors each year and in the absence of effective planning and measures from the local bodies and the residents,it is not only on the perils of a major devastation,of both culture and environment, said Prof Saswat Bandhopadhyay from Faculty of Urban Planning at CEPT,who is coordinating the project.
The reason for selecting Ajmer-Pushkar,Varanasi and Hyderabad was the diversity in topography,history and culture of these cities. This one-year programme will be implemented in two phases. Phase one that is already started will test methodologies in these three heritage cities which will be further mainstreamed during phase two.
The primary aim of this study will to assist these cities as how to incorporate the cultural heritage in the cities development plan. Also,the heritage cell at each city will be strengthened and tools for heritage management will be developed.
Expert teams from five different areas has been roped in. These areas include urban planning,urban heritage,urban governance,urban regulation and urban infrastructure. The programme is expected to build blocks for implementation of suggestions and mechanisms suggested through Government of India,Urban Development and poverty reduction schemes,especially,Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM),Rajiv Awas Yojna (RAY),Swarna Jayanti Shahri Rozgar Yojana (SJSRY) and World Bank financed projects.