Locals can help preserve Darjeeling toy train: UNESCO team; Amitava Banerjee; Hindustan Times

India – Mountain Railways of India

The UNESCO team that is working on a Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan (CCMP) for Darjeeling Himalayan Railways (DHR), better known as ‘toy train’, believes that this world heritage site can be preserved with active participation from the local communities.

The CCMP is mandatory for all world heritage properties. For the DHR, CCMP is being formulated by the UNESCO team in collaboration with the Indian Railways. The two-year project involves survey, documentation, dialogue and will take into consideration institutional management, finances, legal and technical aspects.

“Conservation of the DHR is people-centric. It is a culture-based development. If one respects the local culture, then they in turn will respect the world heritage DHR,” said Moe Chiba, section chief and programme specialist for culture, UNESCO.

Incidentally, the DHR was bestowed the status of a world heritage site by UNESCO on December 5, 1999.

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