Kumbh Mela Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity: UNESCO

Devotees take a holy dip in the Kshipra during the Simhastha Maha Kumbh Mela in Ujjain Madhya Pradesh on May 6

Devotees take a holy dip in the Kshipra during the Simhastha Maha Kumbh Mela in Ujjain Madhya Pradesh

Kumbh Mela has been recognised by UNESCO as an "intangible cultural heritage of humanity", a tweet by the worldwide organisation said.

The President congratulated those who made this worldwide recognition possible and said the UNESCO list of Intangible Cultural Heritage not only celebrates human diversity and ingenuity, but raises "awareness of the importance of protecting our shared cultural heritage". Its 12th session has been conducted in Jeju, South Korea.

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The recognition follows an earlier decision by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation to inscribe the Irish Folklore Commission Collection into its "Memory of the World" register.

The inscription of ´KumbhMela´ was recommended by the expert body which examines in detail the nominations submitted by Member States. The meeting, which opened on December 4 will end on December 9. The inscription of Kumbh is the third in two years after the addition of Yoga and the Parsi festival Nouroz on December 2016. "Knowledge and skills relating to Kumbh Mela are mainly imparted through the teacher-student relationship, but transmission and safeguarding are also ensured through oral traditions and religious and historical texts", the statement reads.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi was amongst the first to react and he tweeted, "A matter of huge joy and pride for India,". "A very proud moment for us", Union culture minister Mahesh Sharma tweeted.

In 2003, the UNESCO General Conference had adopted the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Heritage as an worldwide treaty, acknowledging that cultural heritage was more than tangible places, monuments and objects and that it also encompassed traditions and living expressions.

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