Last year Prime Minister NarendraModi paid a successful visit to Japan. He visited a number of cities including Kyoto that is regarded as the cultural capital of Japan. Extensive discussions and meetings were held with experts to revive & develop India’s cultural capital of Kashi (present day Varanasi) just like Kyoto –where ancient history and culture go hand in hand with modernisation. The ‘Kashi-Kyoto’ pact was signed between India and Japan for developing the Kashi as the sister city of Kyoto.
As soon as the deal was inked, flow of teams began from Varanasi to Kyoto and from Kyoto to Kashi to get ideas on how culture could be preserved along with modernisation. Talks were held at the Kyoto University to gain insights on environment and solid waste management. Focus was on geographical location, citizen services and development. Wide-ranging discussions were held regarding proper disposal of garbage, sewage management, supply of clean drinking water and river basin management.
A Japanese technology team recently paid a visit to Kashi for studying and analysing the developmental prospects in the region. The experts noted that innovative research to modernise Kyoto could also be used in the developmental process of Kashi, the ancient city which is thickly populated and dependent on the River Ganga. The team also encouraged a detailed plan to be made to for developing the region.
The heritage zones in Kashi would be the first to receive a makeover with assistance from Kyoto. Discussions have been held regarding places like Sarnath, which is a Buddhist Circuit to give a boost to tourism in the area.
The ‘Kashi-Kyoto’ pact aimed at strengthening the partnership and expansion of the technological know-how between the cities, preserving rich heritage and culture along with modernisation will go a long way in providing a fresh perspective in improving our cities.