As per essentially the most contemporary construction, the Ministry of Custom has advocated the ‘Maratha Defense Power Panorama’ for consideration in the UNESCO World Heritage Listing for the 2024–25 cycle, encompassing a full 12 ingredients in this submission.
These include iconic forts equivalent to Salher Castle, Shivneri Castle, Lohagad, Khanderi Castle, Raigad, Rajgad, Pratapgad, Suvarnadurg, Panhala Castle, Vijay Durg, Sindhudurg in Maharashtra, and Gingee Castle in Tamil Nadu.
These ingredients, spread across diverse geographical and physiographic areas, help as a testament to the strategic protection power prowess of the Maratha rule. Developed between the 17th and 19th centuries, the ‘Maratha Defense Power Landscapes of India’ symbolize a great fortification and military machine, integrating the distinctive landscapes of the Sahyadri mountain ranges, Konkan Cruise, Deccan Plateau, and the Jap Ghats in the Indian Peninsula.
Having been incorporated in the tentative listing of UNESCO World Heritage Websites in 2021, this nomination is a distinctive cultural property. The forts, rigorously selected from the more than 390 forts in Maharashtra, express a range of hierarchies, scales, and typological aspects. Seriously, eight of these forts are safe according to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), including Shivneri fortress, Lohagad, Raigad, Suvarnadurg, Panhala fortress, Vijaydurg, Sindhudurg, and Gingee fortress.
The ‘Maratha Defense Power Landscapes of India’ spans varied classes of forts, equivalent to hill forts taking care of Salher Castle, Shivneri Castle, Lohagad, Raigad, Rajgad, and Gingee fortress; a hill-woodland fortress taking care of Pratapgad; a hill-plateau fortress taking care of Panhala; a coastal fortress taking care of Vijaydurg; and island forts taking care of Khanderi fortress, Suvarnadurg, and Sindhudurg.
The inception of Maratha protection power ideology dates back to the 17th century, throughout the reign of Maratha King Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in 1670, and continued through subsequent principles till Peshwa rule in 1818.
The nomination aligns with three criteria:
- To undergo a consuming or, at the very least, outstanding testimony to a cultural custom or civilization that resides or has disappeared.
- To be a prominent instance of a form of construction, architectural or technological ensemble, or landscape that illustrates indispensable stages in human history.
- To be at present or tangibly linked to events or residing traditions, with concepts or beliefs, with inventive and literary works of prominent, neatly-liked significance.
Currently, India has 42 World Heritage Websites, with 34 being cultural sites, seven being pure sites, and one being a blended situation. In Maharashtra, six sites have earned UNESCO recognition, including Ajanta Caves, Ellora Caves, Elephanta Caves, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus, Victorian Gothic and Art Deco Ensembles of Mumbai, and the Western Ghats of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala.
This most contemporary nomination extra emphasizes India’s neatly set apart cultural and ancient tapestries, adding to the realm’s acknowledgement of its heritage.