GUWAHATI, Oct 14 - The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Country Office in New Delhi has taken up the issue of wresting the World Heritage Site (WHS) status for the river island Majuli seriously and it is eager to sign a memorandum of understanding with the Assam government to prepare a flawless nomination dossier of the river island for the purpose.
Disclosing this, sources in the UNESCO Association here told this correspondent that the Country Office of the UN agency is so eager to wrest the WHS status for the river island that it has decided to engage UNESCO technical experts to examine the draft dossier of the island before giving it a final shape. The UNESCO Association is going to make an official announcement here tomorrow in this connection.
This time, the dossiers for the WHS nomination will have to be submitted to the World Heritage Centre (WHC) of the UNESCO by February 3, 2017. It will be scrutinized in June by the WHC.
For the purpose of discussing the entire approach on the issue, the UNESCO Country Office is holding a stakeholders� meet in the city towards the end of this month. UNESCO officials are also attending the meeting, said the sources.
It needs mention here that since 2013, the UNESCO Country Office has so far made three communications with the State government for signing a MoU for the purpose of preparing the nomination dossier of Majuli. But there was no positive response from the State government in this regard, sources said.
In 2012, the nomination dossier of the river island was rejected by the WHC on the ground of �incompleteness�. Since then no attempt was made by any of the authorities concerned from India to re-submit the dossier with the required modifications.
The move to wrest the WHS for the river island was initiated by the non-government organisation Majuli Island Protection and Development Council in 1998-�99. Since then three nomination dossiers for the island were submitted with the WHC.