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The History of INTACH


India is known all over the word for its rich culture and traditions. With the objective of preserving these priceless national assets, and bringing awareness to India's people, a group of art-lovers came together in New Delhi to found the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) on the 27th of January, 1984. The founder members vision, led by the trust's first chairperson, Mr. Rajiv Gandhi, was to create a membership organisation that acts as a catalyst for heritage awareness and conservation in India.

Since its inception, INTACH has been a trailblazer in the protection and conservation of the country's natural and cultural heritage. In its long journey, it has moved judicial courts to save heritage and engaged and educated the public in heritage awareness.

Four early projects representing the range and vision of INTACH:
  • Project Ganga was the first major assignment that combined INTACH's vision for natural and cultural conservation with community involvement and popular participation. By cleaning the Ganga it was hoped that elsewhere in the country people would take the initiative and clean their own local rivers and environment.

  • Golconda Fort in Andhra Pradesh was one of the first architectural heritage projects in which INTACH played a catalytic role by writing to the Chief Minister and publicising the perils of unplanned urban encroachments endangering the preservation of this historical fort.

  • Moreover, INTACH captured international attention by holding seminars in Champaner and Hampi in 1987. These seminars resulted in plans for preservation and development of those cities.  International agencies, artists and scholars shared their experiences and exchanged information about conversation methods and best practice. 

  • INTACH's primary mandate is to create a national inventory by listing natural and manmade heritage sites  Its first listing inventory was completed for Shekhawati in Rajasthan.

    It was just the beginning of a long winding road...

The INTACH logo:

The INTACH's logo is an anthromorphic copper figure from Shahabad, U.P. (1800 - 1700 BC), from the National Museum Collection, New Delhi.

INTACH timeline:
1984 INTACH was founded.
1984 Project Ganga was launched.
1984 INTACH's first newsletter was printed.
1984 INTACH sets up the Art Heritage (AH) division.
1984 INTACH set up Natural Resource division.

Lucknow Conservation Centre was established as INTACH's first conservation centre.

1987 First listing (Shekhawati) was completed.
1989 Orissa was the first state to finish listing.
1990 INTACH Art Conservation Centre at New Delhi was established.

INTACH Chitrakala Parishath Art Conservation Centre was established at Bangalore.


ICI (Indian Conservation Institute) Orissa Art Conservation Centre at Bhubaneshwar and ICI Art Conservation Centre at Rampur were established.


ICI Meharangarh Art Conservation Centre was established at Jodhpur.


INTACH's Head Offices' new building at 71, Lodhi Estate, New Delhi was completed.


INTACH Heritage Education and Communication service (HECS) was established. 

1999 INTACH's national website,, was launched.

Mural painting conservation research and training centre at Trissur was established.

2001 INTACH Visakhapatnam Chapter was established. e-mail: