Kolkata’s Durga Puja has been included in UNESCO’s list of ‘Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity

December 17, 2021

#Facts: Durga Puja in Kolkata had been nominated by the Narendra Modi government way back in 2019 for attaining UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) status. The proposal had been sent by the Sangeet Natak Akademi, which operates under the Union Ministry of Culture.

The Sangeet Natak Akademi has termed Durga Puja as the most important festival of West Bengal. It has been said that apart from Kolkata, the festival is observed in several states and cities across India and even in a number of countries. During the festival, Kolkata becomes the cultural and geographical heart of the national and worldwide celebrations of the Durga Puja, the Sangeet Natak Akademi has said on its website. The ICH Nodal agency said that the history of Durga Puja can be traced to the West Bengal capital. One gets to know the evolution of Durga Puja to the grandeur of the community festival from being a traditional family festival. It has also been stated that Durga Puja vividly manifests the amalgamation of religion and art in the city. One will get a detailed exhibition of the celebration of craftsmanship, cross-community revelry, and cross-cultural transactions. These are the reasons why the Sangeet Natak Akademi has nominated Durga Puja in Kolkata for UNESCO Heritage status for 2020.

Finally, on December 15, 2021, UNESCO had accepted the proposal of the Union Government of India and included the Durga Puja in the UNESCO #IntangibleHeritage list.

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