UNESCO has declared the Garba, the dance of Gujarat, as “an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity” (ICHH), recognising it as an inherited “living expression” that fosters inclusiveness and honours the feminine energy of Shakti.

UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage took the decision on Wednesday at its meeting in Kasane, Botswana to inscribe Garba on its ICHH list.

“Intangible cultural heritage is an important factor in maintaining cultural diversity in the face of growing globalisation” and an understanding of it from different communities helps intercultural dialogue and mutual respect for other ways of life, UNESCO said.