Heritage sites in India protected

22nd Aug 2012

The locations in the Western Ghats mountain range recently granted World Heritage Site status by Unesco will be governed responsibly, according to the Wildlife Institute of India (WII).

Vinod B Mathur, dean of the WII, said the 39 sites given heritage status in July will not be subject to any new regulations, restrictions, or developments which lead to a mass relocation of people.

Mathur said Unesco had advised on the need for "responsible tourism", and said it was in India's own interests to manage the sites effectively.

"If not managed well, there are chances that the sites might go on the World heritage danger list," he added.

Speaking in a lecture on World Natural Heritage In Western Ghats: From Inscription To Action, Mathur said: "With the tagging of Unesco's world heritage sites, there will be an increase in tourism to these sites.

"For example, we are seeing local tourism at Kas plateau, which may soon change. We'll have to see that there is responsible visitor management.

"Also, tourists will like to see the aesthetic beauty and experience wilderness. We have to come up with a right kind of tourism model,"' he said

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