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‘Kalagarh in Pauri holds links to early humans’

The Kalagarh area of Pauri district in Uttarakhand can provide insights into the evolution of primates, including early humans, scientists said

dehradun Updated: Feb 05, 2018 22:12 IST
Abhinav Madhwal
Abhinav Madhwal
Hindustan Times, Dehradun
Kalagarh,Pauri,early humans
A fossil of a primate dating back to 11 million years ago was found in Kalagarh in 1983 by a scientist of the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, situated in Dehradun.(AFP)

The Kalagarh area of Pauri district in Uttarakhand can provide insights into the evolution of primates, including early humans, scientists said.

A fossil of a primate dating back to 11 million years ago was found in Kalagarh in 1983 by a scientist of the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, situated here. A primate refers to a mammal of the group that includes monkeys, apes and early humans, among others.

“We have asked the Anthropological Survey of India in Dehradun to include Kalagarh in their studies so that details about the evolution of early primates can be known,” said Ramesh Kumar Sehgal, a scientist at the Wadia Institute. “This (Kalagarh) could be the best site to study evolution (of primates) in Uttarakhand.”

Studies have been conducted and fossils excavated in Kalagarh area, which comes under the Corbett Tiger Reserve. “Not much scientific excursions have been made in recent years,” Sehgal said.

Wadia Institute scientists have also asked the Anthropological Survey of India (ASI) to conduct studies at Ramnagar in Jammu and Kashmir, as a fossil dating back to 13 million years has been found there.

Harsh Vardhan, the office head of ASI, said studies would be conducted in Kalagarh and Ramnagar as suggested by Wadia Institute scientists.

“Our studies are mainly focused on social behaviour, environmental conditions and evolution of the species; Kalagarh site could be important for us,” Vardhan said.

He pointed out that ASI scientists have been collecting fossils from the Shivalik ranges in the outer Himalayas. “They (fossils) are being studied to find out the environment of the pre-historic times, and the food and behaviour patterns of the species.”

First Published: Feb 05, 2018 22:12 IST