Decision : 32 COM 7B.13
Keoladeo National Park (India) (N 340)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-08/32.COM/7B.Add,

2. Recalling Decision 31 COM 7B.17, adopted at its 31st session (Christchurch, 2007),

3. Notes with concern the ongoing problems of water supply caused by reduced summer monsoon rains in the last four years and the resulting problems with invasive vegetation, notably Prosopis julifora and Eichhornia crassifes;

4. Also notes with concern the continuing absence of any information to gauge the effects of the repeated droughts on the diversity and abundance of birdlife in the property, placing in doubt its Outstanding Universal Value;

5. Further notes the efforts of the State Party to address the water shortage as manifested by its investment in the Chiksana Canal and in the Govardhan Drain diversion projects, and in the proposed Dholpu-Bharatpur water supply project;

6. Welcomes the increased involvement of local stakeholders in the management of the property and suggests that formal structures be established to enable local stakeholders to be consulted on management and to participate in the conservation of the property;

7. Requests the State Party to implement the recommendations of the 2008 Reactive Monitoring mission, notably to:

a) complete the Govardhan Drain diversion project in time to take advantage of the 2008 monsoon, and report on progress in the Dholpur-Bharatpur drinking water project;

b) complete the Prosopis invasive plant control measures and put into place a permanent control programme for this, and other invasive plants;

c) collaborate with local communities and stakeholders on management of the property in particular for the eradication of invasive vegetation;

d) implement a monitoring programme of breeding and wintering birds in the property and in the region as soon as possible, with special attention to the Siberian Crane, to enable monitoring of the Outstanding Universal Value of the property; and to make the results of such monitoring available to international conservation organisations, engaging with conservation organisations as appropriate;

e) continue to invest in the maintenance and improvement of the property's infrastructure, including tourism infrastructure;

f) carry out a public use planning exercise with the objectives of better defining management authority, state and central government investments in this regard;

g) support the efforts to identify and improve management of satellite wetlands surrounding the property as a strategy to enhance the resilience of bird populations to climatic and hydrological variations in the region;

8. Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2009, a detailed report on the state of conservation of the property, including progress in implementing the above-noted recommendations, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 33rd session in 2009, with a view to considering, in the absence of substantial progress, the inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Themes: Conservation
States Parties: India
Year: 2008
Decision Code: 32 COM 7B.13