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Thursday, May 30, 2024

ASI digs up millennia-old planned SSC city in Haryana’s Rakhigarhi

Haryana’s Rakhigarhi is famous across the world for the Harrapan (SSC) civilisation. And now, the Archaeological Survey Of India (ASI) is conducting new excavations in and around the 7,000-year-old planned Harappan city in Rakhigarhi which will be completed by the end of May.

The excavation and study at Rakhigarhi has so far revealed that this place once housed a planned city made with better engineering.

During excavation, the officials studied the remains of the Harappan culture and got evidence of town planning, including streets, pucca walls and multi-storeyed houses.

Remains of around 5,000 year-old factory which used to manufacture jewellery has also been traced, which signifies that trading was also done from the city.

According to officials, that time the cities were built using better technology.

The techniques which are now being used to build big cities like straight streets, drains, dustbins placed at corners of streets for garbage, were used at that time.

During excavation, the skeletons of two women were found along with jewellery. Along with skeletons, utensils used by the deceased were also buried.

Rakhigarhi is the largest archaeological site of the Harappan civilisation which comes under two modern villages Rakhi-Shahpur and Rakhigarhi-Khash. Rakhigarhi has been classified as major metropolitan centre of the Harappan culture.

During an investigation conducted in 1969 by Professor Suraj Bhan, it was found that archaeological remains of Rakhigarhi and settlements are of the nature of the Harappan culture.

During investigation conducted by the ASI and Pune Deccan College, it came to the fore that this place has a cluster township spread across 500 hectare.

It includes 11 mounds which have been named RGR- 1 TO 11.

The excavations carried out by the ASI under the directions of Amarendra Nath during the year 1997-98 to 1999-2000 revealed various occupational phases beginning from the pre-formative stage to mature Harrapan period covering the time from 5th millennia BCE to 3rd millennia BCE based on the radio carbon dates obtained from various layers.

Sanjay Manjul, ASI Joint Director General, said: “During the excavation of RGR-1, 2.5 metre-wide streets and walls were found. All of that shows Harappan town planning and engineering. Remains of house complex has also been found. How Harappan people used to stay in these houses is shown. Earthern stoves and antiquity were also found.”

Remains found in RGR-1 and 3 included elephant embossed carving, steatite seal of the the Harappan script, impression of black clay seal, animal figurines of teractotta and steatite made dog, bull, a large number of steatite beads, semi-precious stone beads, copper things.

There is a procedure going on for a memorandum of understanding between the ASI and Haryana government under which the ancient things of the Rakhigarhi will be displayed in a museum which is under the Haryana government. The ASI will soon start excavation in September 2022 and after that will throw open these mounds, so that the tourists can get full information.

Very soon Rakhigarhi will witness beeline of tourists as the officials want that when the tourists see the remains they get the information about the antique and the truth about it.

As per the announcement made by the Central government in the Union Budget 2020-21, this place will be developed as one of the five best iconic places for which excavation started on February 24, 2022.

Its aim is to facilitate the tourist who come to Rakhigarhi besides exposing structural remains.

Besides, its aim is to understand the settlement of Harappa in Rakhigarhi and interrelation of seven mounds.

For the first time, this site was excavated in 1998-2001 by the ASI. After that from 2013 to 2016, Deccan College, Pune worked here.

According to officers in RGR-1, waste of semi precious stones Agate and Carlenian was also found which implies that it must have been left over of after beads were made by carving stone.

In excavation of RGR 3, situated in south west of RGR-1, 11 metre long and 58 cm wide brick walls and a drain were found.

In the earlier excavation in RGR-7 which is situated in 500 metre North of RGR-1, around 60 skeletons were found.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed with a modified headline and minor edits to conform to the HinduPost style guide)

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