Jaipur’s well-renowned astronomical observatory, Jantar Mantar has now been declared as an UNESCO World Heritage Site thus making it Rajasthan’s second monument—after Keoladeo National Park—to acquire this distinction. The decision was taken at UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee meeting in Brasilia.
Rajasthan Tourism Minister Bina Kak on August 1st made the announcement at the site and said that a three-member state government team had recently submitted a management plan to the committee after which the Jantar Mantar was included in the list.
Terming the addition of the Jantar Mantar in the world heritage list as a proud moment for the people of Rajasthan and the country, Rajasthan Tourism Minister Bina Kak added “The process began almost a year ago when it was included in the tentative list and this is indeed a very proud moment for us.” The new status adjudged to the observatory is expected to give a major fillip in the state’s tourism sector.
Jantar Mantar, meaning calculation instrument is one of the largest and the best maintained of the 5 observatories built by Sawai Jai Singh II. The other observatories are in Ujjain, Delhi, Varanasi and Mathura. Jantar Mantar consists of 13 architectural astronomy instruments and is considered as one of the most incredible, most comprehensive, and the best preserved of India’s historic observatories.