The Lead The Newsfeed

Srinagar joins UNESCO network of creative cities; gets praise from PM

Srinagar: Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, has joined the UNESCO’s network of creative cities, the world body announced on Monday, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailing the inclusion as a “fitting recognition” for the vibrant cultural ethos of the old city.

It has been designated as a creative city of craft and folk arts, it said.

Worldwide, 49 new cities have joined the UNESCO’s Creative Cities Network (UCCN) following their designation by UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, in recognition of their commitment to placing culture and creativity at the heart of their development and to sharing knowledge and good practices, the UNESCO said in a statement.

Prime Minister Modi congratulated people of Jammu and Kashmir on the achievement.

“Delighted that beautiful Srinagar joins the @UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) with a special mention for its craft and folk art. It is a fitting recognition for the vibrant cultural ethos of Srinagar. Congratulations to the people of Jammu and Kashmir,” he tweeted.

Srinagar joins Chennai and Varanasi – UNESCO Cities of music; Jaipur – UNESCO city of crafts and folk arts; Mumbai – UNESCO city of film and Hyderabad – UNESCO City of gastronomy, UNESCO New Delhi Office said in a statement.

The network now numbers 295 cities reaching 90 countries that invest in culture and creativity – crafts and folk art, design, film, gastronomy, literature, media arts, and music – to advance sustainable urban development, the world body said.

“A new urban model needs to be developed in every city, with its architects, town planners, landscapers and citizens. We are urging everyone to work with states to reinforce the international cooperation between cities which UNESCO wishes to promote,” said UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay.

UNESCO New Delhi Director Eric Falt offered words of praise to all those who worked on the candidacy of Srinagar.

“I would like to offer my warm congratulations to India and especially to Srinagar. This a great recognition of the vitality of the arts and crafts sector in Srinagar,” he was quoted as saying in the statement.

By joining the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN), cities commit to sharing their best practices and developing partnerships involving the public and private sectors as well as civil society in order to strengthen the creation, production, distribution and dissemination of cultural activities, goods and services, the world body said.

They also pledge to develop hubs of creativity and innovation and broaden opportunities for creators and professionals in the cultural sector, it said.

Newly-designated creative cities such as Bohicon, Doha and Jakarta will join forces with existing member cities including Brazzaville, Dubai, Mexico City and Montr al to develop innovative urban policies and solutions that place people and sustainability at the centre of the development process, echoing the urban solutions launched by the UNESCO Cities Platform on the occasion of the World Cities Day 2021, the UNESCO said.

The collaborative spirit of the UCCN’s members is reflected in the publication UNESCO Creative Cities’ Response to COVID-19 in 2020, it added.

This year, too, the Network is collecting and disseminating information about the culture and creativity-based responses to COVID-19 that have been taken by members of the Network, which UNESCO will publish as part of its continued support to cities’ recovery from the pandemic, the statement said.

The erstwhile unified state of Jammu and Kashmir was bifurcated into union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh in 2019.

Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha also took to Twitter to hail the city’s inclusion in the list.

“Srinagar included in @UNESCO Creative Cities Network in the crafts & folk art category. It is ultimate recognition for artisans & weavers of J&K. Congratulations to entire J&K team, @Junaid_Mattu Ji, @AtharAamirKhan & thanks to @EduMinOfIndia, @MinOfCultureGoI for all the support,” he tweeted.

“Grateful to Hon’ble PM @narendramodi for always giving special priority to J&K. Dossier of exceptionally rich art & craft legacy of Srinagar was meticulously prepared & submitted in June this year by @SMC_Srinagar with help of Kashmir INTACH,” Sinha also tweeted.

Earlier in the day, Mayor of Srinagar, Junaid Azim Mattu, made a series of tweets on the city joining the list, and also thanked people who were involved in the application process.

“What a proud moment for Srinagar! After sustained, collective efforts – Srinagar is now on the International Arts & Crafts Map and very prominently! Encouragement from the Hon’ble PM makes it even more special!,” he tweeted.



The Dispatch is present across a number of social media platforms. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for exciting videos; join us on Facebook, Intagram and Twitter for quick updates and discussions. We are also available on the Telegram. Follow us on Pinterest for thousands of pictures and graphics. We care to respond to text messages on WhatsApp at 8082480136 [No calls accepted]. To contribute an article or pitch a story idea, write to us at [email protected] |Click to know more about The Dispatch, our standards and policies