Giles Tillotson is an expert in Rajput architecture
Tillotson seems an excellent choice - I see he settled in India in 2004 and is married to an Indian Architect/Architectural historian. In this case the appointment of an expert who was originally from the "West" would hardly seem to be relevant to any problems India might have had with this nomination. He could hardly be portrayed as "culturally ignorant" - indeed, could India have asked for more! The problem in this case seems to lie elsewhere within ICOMOS - we commented at the time on this Forum in May 2012 that India seemed to be being given an unnecessarily "hard time". Someone "up the chain" in ICOMOS had got a bee in his bonnet about the choice of sites and wouldn't let it go - hardly the evaluation team's fault. And also, again as we said at the time, this sort of approach wasn't limited to India, but was being meted out on Russia as well for its Kremlins!
From my knowledge of Indian WHS (I have visited 29 of its 30 inscribed and 15 of its 33 T List sites) I believe that any sugggestion that India has problems because of non-Indians doing the evaluation (let alone, as "The Hindu" has stated above, in the lack of enough "photos" in the Nomination file!!) is barking up the wrong tree and smacks of "special pleading" when it would be better spending its efforts on addressing other matters. The problems lie rather in incomplete/late nominations, poor site management, weakly organised/presented cases and even poor selection. I say this as someone who loves travelling in India, appreciates the considerable problems it faces in preserving/managing sites and takes no pleasure whatsoever in seeing sites "fail". But, having recently visited Santinikaten and Majuli and read the evaluations, one wonders how India ever expected them to succeed. Hyderabad (Golconda/Qutb Shahi and Charminar) also doesn't seem to fully appreciate what is required from what I have seen there "on the ground" and read in the Indian newspapers.
Hopefully a lot of this is in the past and recent developments as shown in the process for developing a new T LIst and the growing expertise of India-based heritage consultancies will improve matters. On the other hand the nature of Indian politics/federal tensions, its Civil Service culture (including the ASI) and the way in which its economic growth is being achieved/"managed" and the relatively low priority being given to improiving the county's infrastructure etc are going to make it very difficult to change things.