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8 April 2009
Prehistoric Balochistan unveiled

'Ancient Balochistan - Unfolding the Past', a lecture by the Director of the joint German-Pakistani Archaeological Mission to Kalat, Dr Ute Franke, was held at the Goethe-Institute, Karachi (Pakistan). Dr Franke, a German archaeologist, has been following the prehistoric sites in Balochistan since 1981. The first excavations took place at the site in 1925, bringing to light the ceramic techniques from the third millennium BCE.
     Dr Franke presented the findings of recent excavations that took place at Sohr Damb/Nal, a prehistoric site in Balochistan. During the lecture she gave an insight into one of the least travelled areas of Pakistan, while presenting a wide range of earthenware pottery from 7000-2000 BCE. Dr Franke presented the findings from the various periods in Balochistan history. From the undisturbed Period I to Period II, where a single grave carried upto to 16 individuals, along with decorative beads and utensils and, later on, Period III where figurines and refined ceramics were made to Period IV that shares stark similarities with the Indus Valley Civilisation, the changes that took place culturally and technologically were revealed along with the everyday life that was based on a nomadic lifestyle.
     Though initially expertes believed the civilisation in Balochistan was linked with the Indus Valley, this notion was dispelled by the findings of the German-Pakistani Archaeological Mission. One question that still remains unanswered is why the once thriving Balochistan was left behind by the Indus Valley Civilisation.

Source: Daily Times (7 April 2009)

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