A little over 3 months back NDTV conducted a survey to choose 7 wonders of India. The grand finale took place in a glittering function in New Delhi on April 3 last.
All the 7 selected were man-made monuments, and predictably the Taj Mahal won the ‘race’.
Taj Mahal was also one of the New 7 Wonders of the World that was declared on 07/07/07 (July 7, 2007) in Lisbon, Portugal in a star-studded function which the Indians would remember as one where Christiano Ronaldo allegedly kissed Bipasha Basu.
While there is nothing wrong about Taj Mahal, it’s an irony that in the NDTV contest no natural place made it to the final list. India is blessed by having the highest mountain range as its crown and an ocean at its feet. Yet the voters couldn’t get at least one natural wonder in the final list.
Now the New7Wonders have embarked on finding 7 new natural wonders. The process has commenced last year, and the initial list of 440 places is now pruned to 77 last Thursday.
There are only 2 places from India in the list – the Sunderbans Forest, and the Kaziranga National Park in Nagaon district of Assam. The Sunderbans Forest is jointly under India and Bangladesh, while Cox’s Bazar is also in the list from Bangladesh.
No other natural place qualified in the list from India, though initially the Ganges and Nepal’s Mount Everest did figure in it.
Among the other places selected, and one I’ve been to, is the magnificent Table Mountain of Cape Town, South Africa.
The list 77 selections will be further pruned to 28 finalists in a function on July 21 at the New7Wonders headquarters in Switzerland. The final voting will start after that while the grand finale is expected in 2011.
The venue is still in the process of selection, and you can suggest a location of your choice.
Amid the quest for discovering newer wonders, not many perhaps remember the great The Great Pyramid of Giza in Cairo, Egypt, the only wonder of the ancient world that nearly survives intact.