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Sinauli village in UP becomes archaeological hotpost with excavation of 5000-year-old chariots

The Archaeological Survey of India discovered Copper-Bronze Age chariots, coffins and other artefacts in excavations at Sinauli village after a farmer found pieces of copper in his land.

india Updated: Jun 09, 2018 12:24 IST
S Raju
S Raju
Hindustan Times, Meerut
Chariots,Sinauli village,Uttar Pradesh
An artefact that was excavated at UP’s Sinauli village in Baghpat district. The Archaeological Survey of India has been carrying out excavations in the village for the past three months. (Amit Saini /HT Photo)

With archaeologists and historians celebrating the recent excavations at Sinauli village in Baghpat district of Uttar Pradesh, which suggest the presence of a warrior class of people in the region during the Copper-Bronze Age (3300 BC –1200 BC), locals said they were happy that a new dimension of the subcontinent’s history was unearthed in their village.

Farmer Satendra Mukhia and his brothers, from whose land three chariots, two coffins, swords, beads, helmets and other artefacts were unearthed recently, said that the Archaeological Survey of India’s “valuable and unique findings” made them very proud. “Our village is known globally. What more can we want? Sinauli’s popularity is our reward,” said Satendra Mukhia.

Dr Sanjay Manjul, director ASI, who has been supervising the excavation, said, “Chariots have never been found in the Indian subcontinent before this excavation.” He said the findings indicated that a warrior class of people existed in the area from 2000 BC to 1800 BC.

Speaking about the Mukhia family’s cooperation, Dr Manjul said, “The entire family extended their utmost help to us throughout the excavation.”

Together the Mukhia brothers own 40 bighas of land, out of which they offered around 500 square metres to the ASI for the excavation, which has been going on for three months now.

Mukhia said he found pieces of copper in his field around three months ago and approached the ASI.

“After examining the pieces, Dr Manjul decided to dig a trench, for which we offered them our land. Soon after the digging started, surprising discoveries were made -- chariots, coffins, swords and more,” he said.

Back in 2005, when an ASI excavation first brought Sinauli into the limelight, another farmer of the village Sriram Sharma had taken the lead in helping unearth important historical findings.

To recall, at the time, a few skeletons were found in a field in the village. “I reported the matter to the local media persons, who published some pictures in their newspapers. Later, when ASI officials visited the village, I offered them three bighas of my land. They dug up a trench and carried on excavation for around 13 months, during which a graveyard was discovered deep down the field,” said Sharma.

“That too was a proud time for us, when Sinauli’s name first gained prominence in the country and the world,” he added.

First Published: Jun 09, 2018 12:24 IST