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7000 -years -old rock paintings documented near Chittorgarh

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Udaipur : The department of Archaeology and Museums have documented ages old rock paintings which were discovered some time back at Dhareshwar, a location about 40 km south east of Nimbahera in Chittorgarh district. Similar paintings have also been spotted, though in small number, at Bhathera in Udaipur. Dhareshwar falls in between the borders of Rajasthan and MadhyaPradesh. Based on the style, subject matter and stratigraphy three distinct phases of paintings were identified in these shelters such as Mesolithic (ranging from 7000 to 4500 years), Bronze Age (4500-3000 yrs) and Historic age (2500-1500 years), said Mubarik Hussain, the Superintendent of  Archaeology and Museums, Udaipur circle. The Mesolithic or prehistoric age paintings appear to be quite identical to the ones discovered from Bhimbetka, a world heritage site near Bhopal.

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The rock paintings are situated on a plateau on which flows river known as Gunjali. This east west flowing stream has cut down the bedrock upto a depth of about 50m at places. Due to constant wind and water erosion and weathering scores of cavities varying in size have formed through millennia. Most of the cavities have slanting ceiling and very uneven surface.

About half a dozen rock shelters spread in about 2 km area along the river were identified and recorded. The prehistoric paintings were represented by eye catching geometrical non iconic designs, hunters with bow and arrows and band of deers. The animals and human figures are depicted in abstract style. The second phase was represented by Bronze age and the paintings superimposed by subsequent paintings like humped bulls, bullock cart like motifs, animals.

rock paintings

These paintings were made by using brick red and dark red colors that were made of natural dye. Paintings were mostly done by a variety of red pigment, sometimes black color also have been used. Few of these paintings were discovered first by Dr Kamal Nahar in 2011 and following the report the team of Ahar museum and Sahitya Santhan of Rajasthan Vidhyapeeth documented them. A proposal to take these paintings and two similar ones found near Bathera in Udaipur, under protection by the department is also underway.

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