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Archaeological experts seek carbon dating of Hadoti rock paintings

The Hadoti region and its nearby areas, including Bhilwara, Tonk and Chittorgarh, have treasures of rock shelters and rock paintings of which many have been discovered and many still remain unexplored.

jaipur Updated: Jun 10, 2019 12:45 IST
Aabshar H Quazi
Aabshar H Quazi
Hindustan Times, Kota
hadoti region,rock paintings in hadoti,rajasthan
Archaeologists say if carbon datingof the rock paintings discovered in Hadoti region is done, it would predict the exact age of the paintings. (AH Zaidi / HT Photo )

Archaeological experts want carbon dating of the rock paintings spread across a vast area in Rajasthan’s Hadoti region to ascertain their exact age.

Hadoti region and its nearby areas, including Bhilwara, Tonk and Chittorgarh, have treasures of rock shelters and rock paintings of which many have been discovered and many still remain unexplored. Alnia in Kota to Barad region of Bundi district passing through Chambal river valley and extending up to Bijolia in Bhilwara district is an abode to the rocks shelters and paintings of the ancient and prehistoric era.

Jeevan Kharakwal, head of the archaeology department in Janardan Rai Nagar Rajasthan Vidhyapeeth, Udaipur told HT that the archaeologists and discoverers of rock paintings have guessed the age of the rock paintings spread in Hadoti region by reading their styles, context and patterns but added that if carbon dating is done then it would predict the absolute age of the rock paintings. Rock paintings are made through natural colour, organic medium, blood and other natural things, he said.

Freelance archaeologist and rock painting site discoverer of Bundi, Om Prakash Sharma ‘Kukki’, told HT that around 400 rock painting sites are spread in Kota, Bundi and Bijolia region of Bhilwara district. Archaeologists have claimed that they belong to prehistoric period, including Middle Paleolithic (the second subdivision of the Old Stone Age as it is understood in Europe, Africa and Asia), Upper Paleolithic (the third and last subdivision of the Old Stone Age), Microlithic (the earliest Stone Age period ), Mesolithic (the Middle Stone Age or the period between the Upper Paleolithic and the Neolithic) and other periods but there is no exact depiction of the age.

“The rock paintings here depict figures of ancient man, animals like giraffe, hunting, weapons, dance, bird rider and other figures on the basis of which age predictions are made at present,” he said.

He said establishment of age of rock paintings of Hadoti region through carbon dating can enlighten the historicity of the rock paintings and popularise the rock paintings at international level since rock paintings of Hadoti will certainly come out to be among world’s oldest rock paintings. He added that the rock painting sites are stretched in around 50-kilometre-long area in Kota-Bundi and Bijolia.

Dr Sushma Ahuja, former head of the heritage, archaeology and museology department, University of Kota, said several agencies, including Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts, have done documentation of the rock painting sites in Gararda in the past but carbon dating of the rock paintings have not been done so far. “Carbon dating of the rock paintings would benefit archaeologists and researchers for better understanding of the prehistoric era,” she said.

First Published: Jun 10, 2019 12:42 IST