Historical and Archaeological Findings in News

Rakhigarhi skeletons’ DNA samples sent for analysis


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Indus valley civilization and its decline

Mains level: Not Much

DNA samples collected from two human skeletons unearthed at a necropolis of a Harappan-era city site in Rakhigarhi, Haryana have been sent for scientific examination.

Why in news?

  • DNA analysis might tell about the ancestry and food habits of people who lived in the Rakhigarhi region thousands of years ago.

About Rakhi Garhi

  • The ancient site of Rakhi-Khas and Rakhi-Shahpur are collectively known as Rakhigarhi, located on the right bank of the now dried up Palaeo-channel of Drishadvati.
  • It is located in the Ghaggar-Hakra river plain in the Hissar district of Haryana.
  • Seven mounds are located here.
  • The site has yielded various stages of Harappan culture and is by far one of the largest Harappan sites in India.
  • The site shows the sequential development of the Indus culture in the now dried up Saraswati basin.

Major findings at Rakhi Garhi

  • Findings confirm both early and mature Harappan phases and include 4,600-year-old human skeletons, fortification and bricks.
  • Digging so far reveals a well-planned city with 1.92 m wide roads, a bit wider than in Kalibangan.
  • The pottery is similar to Kalibangan and Banawali.
  • Pits surrounded by walls have been found, which are thought to be for sacrificial or some religious ceremonies.
  • There are brick-lined drains to handle sewage from the houses.
  • Terracotta statues, weights, bronze artefacts, comb, copper fish hooks, needles and terracotta seals have also been found.
  • A bronze vessel has been found which is decorated with gold and silver.
  • A granary belonging to the mature Harappan phase has been found here.
  • Fire altars structures were revealed in Rakhigarhi.


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