HISTORICAL MONUMENTS OF INDIA - THE WEALTH OF INDIAN TOURISM
India's culture is a testimony to the country's rich and diverse heritage and with such an eventful history, it has become a melting pot of diverse forms of art and architecture. Where in the northern parts, one can find exquisite monuments by the Muslim rulers, if you come down South and in the central parts to see the Madhya Pradesh monuments, one can witness the grand architectural brilliance in the temples and other heritage monuments of India. Monuments in Delhi like the Agra Fort and Qutub Minar will leave you in awe. The monuments in Uttar Pradesh like the great symbol of love, the Taj Mahal as well as other historical buildings like Rani Jhansi Mahal will take you back in time. Monuments in Maharashtra like the Ajanta Caves have remains of the rich Mural art whereas the Monuments in Karnataka comprise the rock cut caves of Badami and the World Heritage site of Hampi.
ARCHAEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF INDIA (ASI) - THE CUSTODIAN OF OUR HERITAGE
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), under the Ministry of Culture, is the premier organization for the archaeological research and protection of our cultural heritage. The primary role of ASI, India is to look after the maintenance of these ancient jewels which are of national importance. Besides, it regulates all archaeological activities in the country as per the provisions of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958. It also regulates Antiquities and Art Treasure Act, 1972. For administrative convenience, the ASI has divided the country into 24 circles.
LIST OF INDIAN MONUMENTS AND HERITAGE SITES IN INDIA
As of now, there are 36 World Heritage Sites in India out of which 25 are cultural properties and the other comprises natural wonders. On the other hand, there are around 3700 protected monuments under the ASI's list of monuments in India. The Archaeological Survey of India, Delhi has a large workforce of trained archaeologists, conservators, epigraphist and scientists for conducting archaeological research projects through its Circles, Museums, Excavation Branches, Prehistory Branch, Epigraphy Branches, Science Branch, Horticulture Branch, Building Survey Project, Temple Survey Projects and Underwater Archaeology Wing. Through these departments, it undertakes the work of conserving these prized monuments of India.
A WAY YOU CAN VISIT INDIA'S FAMOUS MONUMENTS
These ASI monuments are known for their historical significance and aesthetic beauty. As these are owned and operated by the Government organisation, ASI, one can visit and witness these marvels at just a nominal ticket price. The concerned states have their own ASI departments that look after these structures. For example, the Archaeological Survey of India, Maharashtra has under it the protection and conservation of Monuments under the Aurangabad, Mumbai and Nagpur circles. Right from the pristine gorgeousness of the Taj Mahal in the North to the finest mural paintings of the Ajanta Caves in the West, ASI's vast list of monuments gives each one of us a chance to witness these splendid works of human hands in all their glory.