Kathmandu, June 5
Department of Archaeology (DoA) and American Sky Door Foundation have given continuity to the excavation to unearth the ancient cave civilization of Samjhong village of Chhosal Village Development Committee-9 of upper Mustang, which lies at the north east of Lo-Mangthang.
The team of American archeologist and National Geographic grantee, Dr. Mark Aldenderfer, American explorer with the North Face Peter Athans, national and international climbers, Christian DNA experts, Gio Vann Mawsa metal expert, Nepali archaeologist Mohan Singh Lama and Praksah Darnal carried out the ground-breaking research recently.
The team discovered century old human remains, animal remains, iron knife with other several objects from the cave of Samjong. There are more than five such ancient cave but this time the team only carried out one cave after signed the five years Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Sky Door Foundation, said Prakash Darnal, Chief of National Archive.
The project has entered its third year. In the first and second year the team only surveyed and study about the cave. During the third year, the team initiated excavation process after signing the MOU, he informed.
After beginning the second phase of its survey in 2012, the team members were excited to discover century-old priceless objects in this mystical land of Mustang, Darnal said.
Chief Darnal informed that the process of excavation of other caves will be give continue of upper Mustang. Before initiated the excavation process there is difficult to covey the local people to take permission due to the unfaithful believe of local people and due to lack of awareness.
The local people have however protested against the idea of allowing the team to take away the important objects and demanded that a museum be made to keep the objects safely. The team had provided Rs. 50,000 to make it but the locals failed to build museum, Darnal informed.
The locals have not built the museum as the several INGOs and NGOs are trying to resettle the 16-17 households of Samjhong to area adjacent to the Samjhong River, he said Darnal informed.
According to Mohan Singh Lama, an archaeologist at DoA, after the resumption of the first phase of the research of the caves in 2008, the team discovered human remains dating back to 3,000 years, bringing out untold stories of an "independent" civilization
During the excavation time, Liesl Clark, wife of Peter Athans distributed books and cloths to the local school’s children and Dr. Bruss Grandner also provided free treatment and medicines the to the local people, children and elder people.