United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has inscribed Kumbh Mela on its Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
- The intergovernmental Committee for Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage under UNESCO made the decision regarding Kumbh Mela during its 12th session that was held at Jeju, South Korea.
- With the inclusion, Kumbh Mela now joins the elements from Botswana, Colombia, Venezuela, Mongolia, Morocco, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates on the list.
- This inscription is the third in two years following the inscriptions of Yoga and Nouroz on December 1, 2016.
More about Kumbh Mela
- Kumbh Mela is considered as the world's largest congregation of religious pilgrims, which is held in Allahabad, Haridwar, Ujjain and Nashik
- It represents a syncretic set of rituals related to worship in India
- It is a social ritual and festive event which is closely linked to the community's perception of its own history and memory
Legend around Kumbh Mela
- According to the legend during the battle between Gods and demons over a pot of Amrit (Nectar of immortality), a few drops of Amrit fell in Allahabad, Haridwar, Ujjain and Nasik. Since then KumbhMela has been held in these places.
- The Committee also took note of the fact that knowledge and skills related to 'Kumbh Mela' are transmitted through the Guru-Shishya parampara (teacher-student relationship) by way of saints and sadhus teaching their disciples about traditional rituals and chants.
- In 2003, the UNESCO General Conference adopted the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Heritage as an international treaty acknowledging that cultural heritage is more than tangible places, monuments and objects; it also encompasses traditions and living expressions.
- Intangible cultural heritage means the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills -- as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces associated with them that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognize as a part of their cultural heritage.