Unrest forces archaeologists to take a break in Balochistan, Pakistan

Article in The News by Anil Dataa, 05 February 2014

No more excavation can be carried out in Balochistan because of the prevailing unrest in the province, said French archaeologists on Tuesday.

Members of two archaeological teams, one from Makran (Balochistan) and the other from Bhanbore (Sindh), met the media and exchanged views at the Alliance Fran├žaise de Karachi.

The leader of the Makran team, Dr Aurore Didier, said she and her team had carried out diggings in Makran between 1987 and 2007.

She said a lot of discoveries pertaining to the rich archaeological heritage of the area and evidence of a highly advanced civilisation had been unearthed during this period and it would soon be published in detail.

Prof Dr Roland Besenval, also from the Makran team, said they had made some sensational finds, especially from the end of the 5th millennium BC to the present day. He said the diggings were conducted in Turbat and Kalat.

Asked what they were engaged in presently, he said they would only be collating the information of the 20-year excavation because right now, with the prevalent conditions, disturbed as they were in Balochistan, it was impossible to continue with any more archaeological work.

Paul Wormser, the leader of the Bhanbore team, said they had unearthed important artefacts from the site, dating from the 1st century AD to the Mughal period.

He said they had found evidence of an important port that was used as a trading post for dealing with countries of the Persian Gulf, including Iran. Besides, he added, they had found exquisite clay pottery and other everyday articles.