HRIDAY (National Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana):

The HRIDAY Scheme, also known as the National Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana, is a central sector program.

 In 2015, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs unveiled the HRIDAY program. The HRIDAY scheme was established to fully utilize the varied natural, historic, and cultural resources of the nation.

Even though the Ministry of Urban Development launched various programs in 2006 to improve India’s heritage cities, the majority of them were carried out without adequate linkage planning. 

  • As a Central Sector program, the HRIDAY program received all of its money from the Union Government.
  • The project was finished in March 2019 after four years starting in December 2014.
  • The strategy called for spending 500 crores to implement the scheme.
  • The HRIDAY program was established to preserve the distinctiveness of the heritage city and facilitate heritage-related urban development by investigating various options.
  • The plan called for conceptual design, development, implementation, and management of the twelve chosen heritage cities in collaboration with the corresponding state governments.
  • The strategy included inclusive urban design, inclusive economic growth, and the conservation and holistic development of heritage assets.
  • With an emphasis on the improvement of the entire ecosystem, including its residents, visitors, and local businesses, it aims to promote the integrated, inclusive, and sustainable development of heritage sites rather than just maintaining the monuments.
  • The full cost of the program will be covered by the central government.
  • For the quick development of heritage cities, the states and local urban bodies are asked to supplement their resources.
  • The government, academic institutions, and the local community will collaborate on the project while incorporating low-cost technologies.

The Objective of the HRIDAY Scheme:

  • Infrastructure planning, development, and implementation should take heritage sensitivity into account, as should service delivery and infrastructure development in central sections of historic cities.
  • Renovate and preserve historic buildings to allow visitors to experience the distinctive character of each historical city.
  • As a foundation for urban planning, growth, service planning, and service delivery, create a heritage asset inventory of cities that documents constructed, cultural, living, and natural heritage.
  • Improvements to basic services with a focus on sanitation (such as water faucets and public restrooms), safety (such as street lights), and tourism amenities.
  • Along with the preservation of legacy and the development of local companies based on heritage, establish connections between cultural facilities and tourism.
  • Urban heritage through adaptive maintenance, such as renovation employing the right technologies to add modern conveniences to old buildings. 
  • This objective also includes creating public-private partnerships for maintaining and conserving historic buildings.
  • Promotion of economic activities to expand employment opportunities for those who live on and around historic places. This involves fostering skill development among individuals and facilitating access to public and cultural areas.
  • Employing contemporary ICT tools to make cities informative and contemporary security systems like CCTV to make cities secure.
  • By creating roads, implementing universal design, utilizing GIS to map out historical places, creating a digital archive of the past, and other methods, heritage sites can be more easily accessed.

Cities under the HRIDAY Program List:

The National Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY), scheme was launched on 21st January 2015, and in the first phase 12 heritage cities mentioned under the HRIDAY development plan are as follows:

  1. Ajmer
  2. Amravati
  3. Amritsar
  4. Badami
  5. Dwarka
  6. Gaya
  7. Kanchipuram
  8. Mathura
  9. Puri
  10. Varanasi
  11. Velankanni
  12. Warangal

Components of HRIDAY Scheme:

The HRIDAY program concentrated on four key areas: Physical infrastructure, Economic infrastructure, Social infrastructure, and Institutional infrastructure to revive and revitalize the soul of the designated heritage cities. 

The following list includes the HRIDAY scheme’s indicative components:

  • A heritage management plan is produced as a result of heritage documentation and mapping. This was accomplished by compiling a list of a city’s tangible and intangible heritage assets and mapping them using a Geographic Information System.
  • Service delivery and heritage revitalization are related. This includes creating cultural events, fairs, festivals, and museums as well as connecting heritage sites to other service offerings at the local and municipal levels.
  • Knowledge management and skill development made up the third indicative component. 
  • The creation of websites, city maps, catalogs, brochures, digital display boards, direction pillars, and other materials was included in this. It also covered the training of local tour guides, craftsmen, and craftspeople.

Outcomes of the HRIDAY Scheme:

The HRIDAY program’s mission term ended on March 31, 2019, and it has the following outcomes:

  • The plan aided in the creation of connections between important civic infrastructure projects and key heritage monuments. 
  • It had a significant impact on the redevelopment of urban infrastructure in regions close to the cities’ historical, religious, cultural, and tourist attractions.
  • In the cities of Varanasi, Amaravati, Ajmer, and Amritsar, around 59 roadways leading to historical landmarks have been finished. 
  • Amritsar, Puri, and Ajmer’s public parks and gardens were revitalized.

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