Backed with more than 1,000-odd heritage monuments, including three World Heritage Sites, and an uninterrupted history of continuous habitation for more then 1,000 years, Delhi has staked claim for inclusion in the Unesco's tentative listing for the World Heritage City tag.
Ahmedabad in Gujarat is also in the race for the title, which as and when earned by either of the city, would make it India's first World Heritage City.
With sites dating back to even Harappan era and around 1,200 heritage monuments and structures, including World Heritage Sites of Red Fort, Qutub Minar and Humayun's Tomb, Delhi has far better stake than any other city in the country to be a World Heritage City.
The Delhi Transport and Tourism Development Corporation (DTTDC), the nodal agency for carrying out related procedures, has submitted the tentative document to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).
'Tentative document' is a set of formal papers that help the stake holder's claim for qualification.
OP Mishra, DTTDC general manager, told HT: "The tentative document was submitted to the ASI in the last week of April and we are waiting to hear from them."
"We will evaluate the proposal for tentative listing. If required, make some additions/ alterations in consultation with the Delhi government and forward it to the Unesco when it is complete in all respects," said BR Mani, spokesperson, ASI.
But the wait for the title is not going to be easy for Delhi. First, it has competition from Ahmedabad and second, the procedure for the final notification is tough and lengthy.
ASI has already forwarded Ahmedabad's tentative document. In the same way, the ASI can send Delhi's nomination for the 'tentative list'.
But to inscribe the same in the final notification is a long drawn process.
Once any site is included in the 'tentative list', a detailed dossier needs to be prepared. January 31 is the deadline every year for sending this dossier and the Unesco generally takes 18 months before it considers it in its annual meeting in June.