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New seven wonders: Taj in contention

This initiative was launched in 2000 by the Swiss film producer Bernard Weber, reports Vijay Dutt.

india Updated: Jan 03, 2006 08:50 IST
Vijay Dutt
Vijay Dutt

The Taj Mahal is among the 21 contenders shortlisted for the New Seven Wonders of the World.

The New Seven Wonders initiative was launched in 2000 by the Swiss film producer Bernard Weber.

More than 19 million voters worldwide nominated hundreds of sites they consider worthy rivals to the seven wonders of the ancient world named by Antipater of Sidon and Philon of Byzantium in 200 BC. Of that selection only the Pyramids of Giza — which also made the list — remain.

The shortlist was drawn up from the 77 most popular sites by a seven-member panel chaired by the former Unesco secretary general Federico Mayor, and including leading international architects.

Half of the funds raised by the project will be used for restorations, mainly of the Bamiyan Buddhas in Afghanistan, destroyed by the Taliban four years ago.

The winners will be announced on New Year's Day, 2007.


Beauties all

The 21 sites vying to be a wonder of the world are:

Taj Mahal, India

Acropolis, Greece;

Alhambra, Spain

Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Chichen Itza, Mexico

Christ Redeemer, Brazil

Colosseum, Rome

The statues of Easter Island

Eiffel Tower, Paris

Great Wall, China

Hagia Sophia, Turkey

Kiyomizu Temple, Japan

Kremlin, Moscow

Machu Picchu, Peru

Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany

Petra, Jordan

Pyramids of Giza, Egypt

Statue of Liberty, New York

Stonehenge, Britain

Sydney Opera House, Australia

Timbuktu, Mali.

First Published: Jan 03, 2006 00:42 IST