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17 Conservation of Architectural Heritage in Ladakh

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Chapter Summary

India has a number of World Heritage Sites, and a UNESCO office in Delhi, but the only legally protected historic sites and buildings are the National Monuments listed and sometimes owned by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). The ASI has a school of archaeology and research laboratories, but limited funds to maintain both a vast number of monuments spread over a vast country, and a cumbersome bureaucracy. There are 13 National Monuments in Ladakh, including the Leh royal palace, the early temples and paintings at Alchi, monasteries such as Thikse, and the rock-carved Maitreya at Mulbek. The Indian National Trust for Art and the Cultural Heritage (INTACH), an NGO "established in 1984 to identify and protect the many thousands of monuments and historic buildings that fall outside the purview of the ASI", has published a more expansive list of 73 heritage sites in Ladakh.

Keywords: Archaeological Survey of India (ASI); INTACH; Ladakh; UNESCO; World Heritage Sites



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