Friday, January 1, 2010

Stakeholders meet - Heritage of Nalanda and its Continuity

A two day workshop to discuss the development under the NNMSG community tourism project and Mapping of Nalanda Project was held on 15th and 16th June 2009. It was inaugurated by Shri K.N. Srivastav, DG, and ASI.
Day-1, 15th June 09

1- Archaeological finds and recent excavations in and around Nalanda

An exhibition and a detailed PowerPoint presentation by Shri N.G. Nikoshey

Four major excavations were carried out by ASI in Nalanda and its vicinity. A detailed presentation about the antiquities, structures and potsherds found from the site was presented. Four sites covered under the presentation included Juafardih, Daman Khanda, Begampur and Ghoda Katora.

A photographic exhibition of the excavated site was also arranged for the participants.

2- Mapping of Nalanda- Power point presentation, Presented by Deepak Anand (NNM)

NNM initiated the “Mapping of Nalanda” project in 2006. The documentation of the Archaeological finds in the villages in and around Nalanda is done using the GIS System. A presentation regarding this was presented. The focus of the presentation was how Xuanzang’s record is helpful in locating the sites associated with Buddha. Lots of archaeological remains are in villages and if the villagers don’t participate in the management of this heritage then the heritage will be lost in coming years. The presentation also focused on strategy to involve community for Heritage preservation.

Day-2, 16th June 09
Shri Anil Kumar, Dy. Director, Bihar Tourism, was the chief guest. The focus this day was involving the community in development of action plan for tourism in villages. Representatives from Jagdishpur, Telhara, Bargaon and Parwati participated in this workshop.

3- Community tourism and new tourist circuits, A power point presentation Presented by Deepak Anand, NNM
A Participatory Rural Appraisal under process at the time was done at villages in and around Nalanda. The objective of the PRA among other objectives is to involve community in planning process for the tourism. The tourism has grown more than 200% in last decade but the community has yet to benefit in the same proportions. Reasons for why community is not being benefited from growing tourism were muted in the discussion with the community members. Community organizations are formed Action plan for respective villages as was discussed with the village representatives

4- A Master Plan for the remains of Ancient Nalanda remains
“Nalanda remains” is already in the queue of the world heritage site. NNM is preparing a suitable Master plan by involving the community. The Master plan should not only help better preserve the heritage but also help in improving the economic condition of the community which will go hand in hand for the long term sustainability of any solution. The presentation on Master Plan of ‘Nalanda remains’ discussed the available options for the suitable changes that can be incorporated for benefit of both tourism and the community.

Highlights of Inaugural Speech by Shri K. N Srivastav, DG, ASI
1-Shri Srivastav in his speech stressed the need to expedite the documentation work. A detailed documentation is a prerequisite for any excavation he commented.

2- ASI has collaborated with IIT, Kanpur, and if required IIT, can be roped in for the ongoing documentation work.

3-There is a need for a multi stakeholder body for the smooth working of the project and actualization of the objectives of the project. He welcomed the idea of a joint collaboration between Nava Nalanda Mahavihara and Archaeological Survey of India.

4- There is an immense potential in Nalanda and around for a community based heritage tourism.

Highlights of community discussion on the 16th June
Community members from Telhada, Jagdishpur, Parwati and Bargaon participated actively in the discussion. Members from vendors association also expressed their views. The discussion was mainly revolved around the potential of the respective villages for its development as a tourist site.

A presentation was made on the community tourism potential in and around Nalanda. A tentative action plan for various sites where NNM is already doing PRA was discussed. Also part of the presentation was a Suitable Master Plan for Nalanda based on the inputs from the community.

Shri Anil Kumar, Dy. Director, Tourism, took note of all the points raised by the participants and assured about required action at his end and all possible support in future. In his address he appreciated the efforts made by the community organizations for the promotion of Rural Tourism.