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Saturday, January 5, 2013

Torandwar Existed in Sirpur Earlier Than Believed

In a claim that could stroke a debate in archaeology, archaeologists excavating at Sirpur in Chhattisgarh are pointing out that the concept of "Torandwar" in temples existed in primitive forms here in sixth century AD questioning the known history known so far that the concept was first developed in South Indian temples and it later travelled to other places.

"Recent findings in Sirpur is enough to indicate that the idea of 'Torandwar" existed here in the 6th century and it later travelled to South India in the 7th century", octogenarian archaeologist A K Sharma, who is also excavator for the ancient site, told TOI.

He said the known history so far was that 'Torandwar' in temples was developed in South Indian temples, apparently in the 8th century. "Now, there are sufficient evidences, including stone pillars with specific inscriptions, to prove it otherwise," he claimed.

Elaborating his point, Sharma said the 7th century ruler of erstwhile Dakshinkaushal, Mahashivgupta Balarjun, had two wives—Amba Devi from local Chhattisgarh region and Ambaddi Devi, who was a princess from Karnataka region. "People from Ambaddi Devi's region took the concept of 'Torandwar and fortification" to the Southern state of Karnataka," he claimed.

The veteran archaeologist, who has excavated, exposed and conserved 48 mounds ”out of the total 184 mounds spread over in an area of 29.25 square kilometre, said the archaeological findings proved that Sirpur—a little known town in Mahasamund district ”was once the nucleus of culture. It was home for Hindus, Buddhists, Shaivas as well as Jains. Known as the city of wealth from 6th century, Sirpur had a very rich multi-faith culture.

"Even today, there are people who think that Chhattisgarh is a tribal dominated remote area. The archaeological findings and revelations from Sirpur are sufficient to prove that the region was much developed than many other known civilizations from 6th to 10th century," Sharma said adding that the region, however, was destroyed in 12th century AD due to a powerful earthquake with an epicentre somewhere near Amravati in Vidarbha, now in Maharashtra.

Throwing light on other Sirpur findings, Sharma said recovery of 85 bronze statues, raw materials such as ancient ingots and crucibles indicated that the region had one of the biggest stone and metal art centre. Besides, lakhs of pieces of glass and coloured glass bangles were found during excavations indicating that the region was also a fine glass producing centre. "In the sand of river Mahanadi, gold traces are found. The glass produced with gold mixed sand was considered fine," he added.

Source: Times of India


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