A five-day 19th General Assembly and Scientific Symposium of the International Council on Monuments and Sites ICOMOS took place on 11-16 December in New Delhi, India with the theme “Heritage & Democracy” and was successfully executed by CIMGlobal.
More than 900 ICOMOS General Assembly & Scientific Symposium 2017 delegates from more than 80 countries agreed in unison “Heritage is a Fundamental Right and a Responsibility of all”. The responsibility for safeguarding heritage extends between nations and cultures, and any intentional destruction that aims to erase a cultural identity is a “breach of fundamental human rights”, the Delhi Declaration passed by the ICOMOS.
ICOMOS is a prestigious global non-government organization dedicated to promoting the application of theory, methodology, and scientific techniques to the conservation of the architectural and archaeological heritage world over. It is also an advisory body to the UNESCO for cultural heritage, in particular fort he implementation of the World Heritage Convention.
ICOMOS 19th General Assembly meeting was a place of networking for Heritage Conservation Professionals including Urban Planners, Architects, Art Historians, Administrators, Administration, Tourism experts and other decision makers.
It was the first time when ICOMOS General Assembly meeting took place in INDIA and CIMGlobal had an honor to be its official Professional Conference Organizer (PCO). This event attracted 914 registered delegates from 80 countries, out of which more than 550 delegates were foreigners.
Shri Mahesh Sharma graced the inaugural ceremony – Minister for Tourism and Culture, Government of India, Shri Sadguru Jaggi Vasudev – Founder of Isha Foundation, Ms Mechtild Rössler – Director of UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre, Ms. Ege Yildirim – ICOMOS Focal Point for the UN Sustainable Development Goals, Ms Sudha Gopalakrishnan – Executive Director of Sahapedia, Dr. Gamini Wijesuriya – ICCROM etc.
More than 430 abstracts received from the world over heritage practitioners through CIMGlobal’s online Abstract Management Platform. The scientific committees ratified the proposals and 60 papers and posters were presented.
This conference was sponsored by esteemed organizations including UNESCO Delhi Office, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Ministry of Culture, Archeological Survey of India (ASI), Wildlife Institute of India (WII) – Government of India; Government of Jammu & Kashmir, Government of Bihar, Government of Odisha. Other prestigious organizations include Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC), TATA Steel, Innovative Lighting Designs Limited, Stonex, Outlook as Media partner.
The conference concluded with many deliverables including the election of next Board of ICOMOS international, where Dr. Rohit Jigyasu, President – ICOMOS India is elected as the Vice President of ICOMOS International, Dr. Toshiyuki Kono as ICOMOS President; Prof. Saleh Lamei is honored with GAZZOLA PRIZE for 2017 for his lifetime contribution to Heritage Conservation in Egypt and announcement of ‘Delhi Declaration’ where “Heritage is proposed as the Fundamental Right”.
Participants felt this as a unique ICOMOS General Assembly compared to earlier ones as the people of India were very friendly and it’s evident the way personal attention is provided to each guest in addressing needs and concerns, exposure to a vibrant cultural diversity of the country, the cuisine and the event arrangements. Participants carried the wonderful memories of this international event.