Move to restore ghats' identity
With an aim to revive the dying traditional craft and landmark of Ganga ghats in Varanasi, eight Bamboo Parasols were set up at Assi Ghat and Tulsi Ghat on Sunday.
As many as eight bamboo parasols, 'Chhatris' including six at Assi Ghat and two parasols at Tulsi Ghat were installed under the joint auspices of Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) Varanasi chapter and Rai Krishna Das INTACH Varanasi Nyas.
The occasion was graced by national chairman of INTACH (New Delhi) retired Brigadier General LK Gupta.
Talking to Hindustan Times, Gupta said 'INTACH primarily aims at restoring the identity of Varanasi ghats chhatris and Dharma koop situated at Meer Ghat'.
He said both are culturally important for the city and have lost their significance with passage of time and require to be conserved. He said without the active involvement of local authorities, government and most importantly local people the oldest living city of the world could not restore its heritage value.
'Things are under process to include Varanasi's name in the world heritage city list of UNESCO and around four days back a meeting with representative of UNESCO for India was held at New Delhi to discuss the things', he said.
INTACH Varanasi Chapter convener and executive trustee Kalyan Mishra said 'this is just the beginning of reviving the dying traditional craft of Varanasi that has been the landmark of its ghats that would be continued'.
He said INTACH targets of installing 150 'chhatris' in first phase from Rajghat to Assi ghat. He said fortunately foreigners, Muslim and local people have come forward with donations and already orders of 90 chhatris have been placed to the only single family skilled in making bamboo umbrellas left in the city.
He said picturesque Ganga ghats of the temple city was incomplete without this centuries-old trademark 'chhatris' and so with installation of these chhatris the identity of ghats are being restored.