What is it?
- The ‘Adopt a Heritage: Apni Dharohar, Apni Pehchaan’ scheme is an initiative of the Ministry of Tourism, in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture and the Archaeological Survey of India.
- It was launched in September 2017 on World Tourism Day by President Ram Nath Kovind. Under it, the government invites entities, including public sector companies, private sector firms as well as individuals, to develop selected monuments and heritage and tourist sites across India.
- Development of these tourist sites calls for providing and maintaining basic amenities, including drinking water, ease of access for the differently abled and senior citizens, standardised signage, cleanliness, public conveniences and illumination, along with advanced amenities such as surveillance systems, night-viewing facilities and tourism facilitation centres.
- The sites/monument are selected on the basis of tourist footfall and visibility and can be adopted by private and public sector companies and individuals — known as Monument Mitras — for an initial period of five years.
- The Monument Mitras are selected by the ‘oversight and vision committee,’ co-chaired by the Tourism Secretary and the Culture Secretary, on the basis of the bidder’s ‘vision’ for development of all amenities at the heritage site.
- There is no financial bid involved.
- The corporate sector is expected to use corporate social responsibility (CSR) funds for the upkeep of the site.
- The Monument Mitras, in turn, will get limited visibility on the site premises and on the Incredible India website.
- The oversight committee also has the power to terminate a memorandum of understanding in case of non-compliance or non-performance.