Deep in the Roots

Indias traditions and practices come together under a list
Artists performing Kalaripayattu, Keralas traditional martial art form
Artists performing Kalaripayattu, Keralas traditional martial art form

Kerala&rsquos martial art form Kalaripayuttu, the Buddhist chanting from Leh and Kargil, the practice of tying turbans or safa in Rajasthan, Ramlila, Gujarat&rsquos Patola silk or the making of rice beer in Manipur&mdashthese come together as traditions that have defined our heritage through centuries. Noting these and more, the Union Cultural Ministry recently proposed a National List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of India as part of its Vision 2024 programme. Released on the ministry&rsquos website, this list has around 106 items in its draft version. The Cultural Ministry intends this to be an on-going project, where people will be free to suggest additions and amendments without any time restrictions. While 13 of these traditions have been recognised officially by Unesco, the proposed list aims to extend this shadow of awareness, protection, and preservation. It is divided into five broad categories oral traditions, social practices, performing arts, knowledge and practices related to nature, and traditional craftsmanship. As of now, given the limited categories and overlap of traditions across the country, the list has a few repetitions. But its scope is vast, so much so that it could become not only a rich resource, but also a concerted step in the right direction to conserve what we have. 

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