Heritage Theft: Parliamentary Committee summons ED, Custom, DRI

New Delhi, December 18 (IANS): The meeting of the Parliamentary Committee on Transport, Tourism, and Culture has on Thursday summoned representatives of the Ministry of Finance, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes & Customs (CBIC), the chief of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), and Director of Enforcement to discus heritage theft.

The committee will hear the subject "Heritage Theft - The Illegal Trade in Indian Antiquities and the challenges of retrieving and safeguarding our Tangible Cultural Heritage".

The UNESCO Illicit Trafficking in Cultural Property report reminds the world that theft, looting, and illicit trafficking of cultural property takes place in every country, robbing people of their culture, identity and history.

Illicit trafficking of cultural property has many causes, and ignorance and poor ethics are at its very root. Illicitly-traded cultural property is often transferred either through illicit markets worldwide or through licit markets such as auctions, including through the Internet.

People, governments, the art-market and institutions can do their part to fight this by raising awareness, being informed and ethical when buying and selling art and cultural objects, enacting and respecting laws, and protecting cultural heritage and property.