08 October 2016 Current Affairs: The Union Ministry of Urban Development has approved projects worth Rs.114 crore under HRIDAY scheme for improving infrastructure facilities around core heritage sites in five cities.
These five cities are : Varnasi (Uttar Pradesh), Amritsar (Punjab), Dwaraka (Gujarat), Puri (Odisha) and Warangal (Telangana). Projects in these districts were selected based on recommendation of inter-Ministerial HRIDAY National Empowered Committee.
Heritage Infrastructure Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY) : HRIDAY is a Central Scheme that aims to preserve and rejuvenate the rich cultural heritage of the country.
The scheme will be completely funded by the Central Government to create infrastructure and provide facilities around the heritage sites to attract more tourists. It aims to bring urban planning, economic growth and heritage conservation together for heritage cities. It seeks to promote an inclusive, sustainable and integrated development of heritage sites, focusing on maintenance of monuments and advancement of their entire ecosystem.
Objectives of Scheme : (i) Bring urban planning, economic growth and heritage conservation together for heritage cities. (ii) Beautification of heritage cities in an inclusive and integrated manner with prime focus on livelihoods, skills, cleanliness, security, safety, accessibility and faster service delivery. (iii) Guide conservation, restoration, future use and development of heritage cities. (iv) Create improved connectivity platform and access to tourists. It will help to harness full potential of India’s tourism sector which has total 35 UNESCO recognized natural, cultural and mixed heritage sites. India ranks second in Asia and fifth in the world interms of heritage sites.