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200 megalithic graves found on Nagarjunasagar dam bed

In a rare archaeological find, the Department of Archaeology and Museums officials have found about 200 megalithic burial sites on the Nagarjunasagar reservoir bed.

The sites surfaced recently after the water level in the dam receded below the minimum draw down level (MDDL).

The officials said people lived there between 1,000 BC and 2nd Century AD and they could have used the area located exactly under Nagarjunasagar reservoir bed as their community burial site.

Their conclusion was based on finding a large number of stone circle burials at one spot.

Speaking to The Hindu, Assistant Director of the Department of Archaeology and Museums P. Nagaraju said they could not say that there were more such burial sites under the water since some had been spotted.

“We have found proof that the people had made the Nagarjunasagar backwater area, where the river Krishna and its tributary Dindi converge, their habitation some 3,000 years ago with this finding,” Mr. Nagaraju stated.

Several excavations in the past had proved that civilisations had flourished on the river banks due to water availability and the finding of the burials was very close to river would support that theory again.

An insight into lifestyle

Stating that the excavation would provide an insight into the lifestyle of people who lived in that era, Mr. Nagaraju said there was a practice of burying various belongings used by the dead along with the body.

“Such belongings will certainly help us know about religion, food habits, occupation and others details related to the people buried here,” the Assistant Director said adding that local people had also informed the archaeology officials that there was a habitation very close to the burial site found now until Nagarjunasagar project was constructed.

However, the inhabitants were displaced and rehabilitated elsewhere when the impounding of water in the reservoir began in 1950s.

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Printable version | Aug 7, 2020 8:37:48 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/200-megalithic-graves-found-on-nagarjunasagar-dam-bed/article7622304.ece

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