On 16th January 2005, the Times of India was too happy to publish a report, What’s next after Saraswati for ASI?,  with a conclusive statement, So we finally know that the mythical river Saraswati doesn’t exist. After nine excavations in different parts of India, excited initial whispers of its hazy trace, and seven months into the new UPA regime, we were told, via the Rajya Sabha, that there’s no sign of Saraswati.”.

Unfortunately it has become a fight between them and us. The ‘them” is represented by the pseudo-secularists and communists along with people from the likes of the Times of India and the UPA, to whom the Vedic and Hindu glories are mythical. The “us” is always on their backfoot, fighting for the mere acknowledgement of the faith and its wisdom, occasionally finding their voices in the Pioneers.

The loser, if anybody, will be India and her Civilization.

The hope, though is “Truth always prevails”……

 

 

UPA now admits Saraswati existed

http://www.dailypioneer.com/222382/UPA-now-admits-Saraswati-existed.html

Rajesh Singh/Santanu Banerjee | New Delhi

Earlier, had refused to agree despite Govt agencies confirming existence of river


In a significant shift from its earlier stand that probes conducted so far showed no trace of the mythical river, the Union Government has recently admitted that scientists have discovered water channels indicating “beyond doubt” the existence of the “Vedic Saraswati.”

The Government’s fresh submission came in response to an unstarred question in Rajya Sabha on December 3 by Prakash Javadekar (BJP), who wanted to know whether satellite images had “established the underground track of Saraswati, and if so, why should the precious water resources not be exploited to meet growing demands.”

To this, the Union Water Resources Ministry quoted in writing the conclusion of a study jointly conducted by scientists of ISRO, Jodhpur and the Rajasthan Government’s Ground Water Department, published in the Journal of Indian Society of Remote Sensing. Besides other things, the authors had said that “clear signals of palaeo-channels on the satellite imagery in the form of a strong and powerful continuous drainage system in the North-West region and occurrence of archaeological sites of pre-Harappan, Harappan and post-Harappan ages beyond doubt indicate the existence of a mighty palaeo-drainage system of the Vedic Saraswati river in this region… The description and magnanimity of these channels also matches with the river Saraswati described in the Vedic literature.”

A leading educationist and currently chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University, Yash Pal, who had published in 1980 in his own words “a small paper on the existence of Saraswati river which attracted attention,” concurred with the view. “Surveys so far have brought out clearly the path the river had taken when in flow,” the national research professor told The Pioneer. He did a stint with ISRO (which has played a pivotal role in the probes so far) from 1973-1980 where he set up the Space Application Centre.

On whether the Union Government should assume a proactive role on the issue of reviving the river to tackle the water shortages, he said, “With advancement of technology more research should be conducted. The river was not lost yesterday; perhaps due to tectonic shifts it disappeared ten thousand years ago. We have to keep these issues in mind.”

All through its tenure until now, the UPA Government had denied the existence of the mystery river. Then Culture Minister Jaipal Reddy had told Parliament that excavations conducted so far at nine sites had not revealed any trace of the lost river Saraswati. He stated that the UPA Government had not extended the sanction for the project given by the NDA Government. Giving a progress report of the Saraswati River Heritage Project launched by the NDA Government, he had said that though the project report was prepared in September 2003 envisaging a cost of Rs 36.02 crore, it was later slashed to Rs 4.98 crore.

The Leftists, who commanded great influence over the first five years of the UPA regime, too, were dismissive of the evidences. Senior leaders even castigated probe agencies for ‘wasting’ time and money over the study of the mystery river. Three years ago, senior CPI(M) leader and Politburo member Sitaram Yechury slammed the ASI for its efforts. A Parliamentary Standing Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture, which he headed in 2006, said, “The ASI has deviated in its working and has failed in spearheading a scientific discipline of archaeology. A scientific institution like the ASI did not proceed correctly in this matter.”

These assertions had come despite mounting evidence of the river collected by central agencies such as Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Geological Survey of India (GSI), Oil and Natural Gas Commission (ONGC), Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) and the Central Groundwater Authority (under the Water Resources Ministry). The Government had also failed to acknowledge expert opinion that the river’s revival could tackle the increasing water demands of more than 20 crore people in the North-West region of the country.

The first national impetus for research on Saraswati came during the NDA regime when the then Union Culture Minister Jagmohan in June 2002 announced excavations to trace the river’s course. He named a team of four experts – Baldeo Sahai of ISRO, Ahmedabad, archaeologist S Kalyan Raman, glaciologist Y K Puri and water consultant Madhav Chitle – for the task. But even earlier, States like Haryana had begun their study of the ‘underground river.’

Talking of the progress, SL Aggarwal, an official in Haryana Irrigation Department said, “Work on the 3.5 km stretch of river Saraswati between Jyotisar and Bibipur would be completed in one-and-a-half months and then we would be able to revive the ancient river and be able to use the water for irrigation purposes.” The Haryana Government recently sanctioned Rs 10.05 crore for the project of revival of the river, with the Oil and Natural Gas Commission carrying out geophysical and geoelectric surveys for drilling of wells in association with Kurukshetra University for exploratory purposes.

A non-government organisation (NGO), Saraswati Nadi Sodh Sansthan, has also been working for the revival of the ancient river through its entire track. Two seminars were held on this issue on October 22, 2008 and November 21, 2009 at Kurukshetra where representatives from ONGC, Geological Survey of India and Indian Space Research Organisation were invited.

Rajasthan too has been an active participant in the project. Some four decades ago the Archeological Survey of India (GSI) had conducted excavations at a village named Kalibanga in Srigananagar district of Rajasthan, unearthing a full- fledged township beneath a mound, locally called ‘Thed.’ The ASI researchers came to the conclusion that the sight belonged to the Harappan period. Subsequent studies revealed that this flourishing town was situated on the banks of the Saraswati which once flowed from this part of the Rajasthan desert.

About two decades ago, scientists at Central Arid Zone Research Institute (CAZRI) at Jodhpur launched a project to track down the traces. They concluded that the ancient channels were a dead river that could well be Saraswati. Interestingly, here, the ancient texts and the geographical history of the region were constant bases of reference of the studies.

Analyses of images earlier taken by the American satellite Landsat in the 1970’s clearly showed the presence of underground water in a definitive pattern in the Jaisalmer region. As part of the project, then, underground water researchers were asked to dig bore wells at places from where this lost river used to flow. They selected Chandan Lathi near Jaisalmer for this purpose. To the surprise of researchers, the water found after digging the bore wells at places on the course of the river was not only sweet but available in plenty. Encouraged by this discovery, they dug two dozen bore well in the area, from where the river used to flow, and in all of them they found sweet water.

A few years later Dr Vakankar, a noted historian, as part his Itihas Sanklan Yojna, visited this and other sites linked with the river. Together with another expert Moropant Pingle, he concluded that the Saraswati used to flow from this part of Rajasthan, Sirsa in Haryana, Bhatinda in Punjab and Srigangangar district in Rajasthan.

With the Government indicating a shift in its position, it remains to be seen whether the research work by central agencies that had come to a near halt, will now resume.

With inputs from Lokpal Sethi in Jaipur and Nishu Mahajan in Chandigarh

 

Also read:

The shameful politics of the Saraswati river

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Ironically, these are the same ‘authorities’ who are asked to prove authenticities of the likes of Ram Sethu or the Saraswati River No wonder, they do not have any clue. 

And even if they do, there is then the anti-national, anti-Hindu and pro-minority media and politicians to overcome. Thus,  Ram Janmabhoomi and Ayodhya temple is overshadowed by Babri Masjid and its demolition and  Tejo Mahalaya remians the Taj Mahal.

An India which wishes to be severed from her cultural and civilizational roots and prefers to be glorified by the reflections of her invaders will, knowingly or unknowingly, squander away all its wealth, both material and spiritual.

Only a India proud of her heritage will be able to protect it.

 

Some people lose faith – but only bureaucrats can lose an Indian temple

Rhys Blakely in Mumbai

 

The custodians of India’s archaeological treasures are to hire 10,000 attendants to patrol historical sites after an audit found that 34 monuments, including a cave temple, had “disappeared”.

Questions tabled in the Rajya Sabha, the Indian equivalent of the House of Lords, showed that several protected heritage sites had been buried under illegally constructed buildings. Others had been submerged by reservoirs or looted by art thieves. Officials admitted that the whereabouts of some had simply been forgotten because of poor record keeping.

“Most of these sites were declared protected under the British,” Ashok Kumar Sinha, the head archaeologist of the Archaeological Society of India (ASI), the body responsible for protecting monuments, said. “But the original notifications did not detail their exact locations. Many are missing.”

The monuments that the Indian Ministry of Tourism and Culture admitted were untraceable included several sites from the days of the Raj, including a tomb in Kishanganj in Delhi that housed the remains of Britons killed in the Indian Mutiny of 1857. In the northeastern state of Assam, weapons belonging to the 16th-century Afghan conqueror Emperor Sher Shah are missing

In Aruna-chal Pradesh, close to the border with China, the ruins of an ancient copper-plated temple dedicated to the Hindu god Lord Shiva could not be accounted for.

A complex of ancient cave temples in the northern town of Basohli, which had yielded artefacts dating back as far as the 10th century, has also been lost.

The catalogue of untraceable monuments supplied by the ministry may indicate a cavalier attitude to record keeping. It lists as missing a statue of Brigadier-General John Nicholson, an army officer for the British East India Company who led the charge on Delhi in 1857, a mission on which he was killed. A statue of Nicholson was erected at the Kashmiri Gate in north Delhi by the British but was taken down when India became independent. The ministry said that it did not know where it was. However, it was taken to Nicholson’s school, the Royal School Dungannon, in Northern Ireland.

Mr Sinha insisted that the ASI was getting on top of the situation, but other experts were not convinced.

Professor Nalini Thakur, the head of architectural conservation at the School of Planning and Architecture in Delhi, said that the planned army of attendants risked antagonising residents, many of whom had lived near, or even in, monuments for generations.

Looting of small, valuable items that fell outside the purview of the ASI was a problem, according to Shashi Misra, the chairman of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage. “Huge numbers of idols and statues are disappearing and are being sold on the international art market,” he said.

Experts said that events such as the earthquake that hit the western state of Gujarat in 2001 had attracted dealers. After the quake, which destroyed an estimated 400,000 homes, antiques traders stripped houses of their ornate doors.

In Chandigarh in recent years, foreign dealers have been buying the furniture used by the city’s civil servants.

Much of the furniture was designed by the Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier, who played a role in designing Chandigarh, and can fetch thousands of pounds on the international market.

“Too much of India’s heritage is being transported out of the country and nobody is taking notice,” said Mr Misra.

Looted treasures

In the 1990s the National Museum in Kabul was looted after bombing. About 90 per cent of the exhibits were removed and most have not been recovered

The palace of the Assyrian King Sennacherib in Iraq was uncovered by archaeologists in 1847. It was decorated with carved stone slabs describing the exploits of his army. Over time these were removed and since the 1990s the reliefs have been appearing for sale in the West

The Kanakaria mosaic once decorated the ceiling of the 6th century church of the Panagia Kanakaria in Cyprus. It was regarded as one of the finest examples of early Christian art in the world In the 1970s looters hacked the mosaic from the church, figure by figure, and smuggled the pieces off the island. Two fragments were recovered in 1984 but nothing was heard of the others until 1988 when an American art dealer paid $1 million in cash for four more

Source: The Illicit Antiquities Research Centre, Unesco 

Excerpts from

Who Was Abraham?

 

by Gene D. Matlock, B.A., M.A. 

In his History of the Jews, the Jewish scholar and theologian Flavius Josephus (37 – 100 A.D.), wrote that the Greek philosopher Aristotle had said: “…These Jews are derived from the Indian philosophers; they are named by the Indians Calani.” (Book I:22.)

Clearchus of Soli wrote, “The Jews descend from the philosophers of India. The philosophers are called in India Calanians and in Syria Jews. The name of their capital is very difficult to pronounce. It is called ‘Jerusalem.'”

“Megasthenes, who was sent to India by Seleucus Nicator, about three hundred years before Christ, and whose accounts from new inquiries are every day acquiring additional credit, says that the Jews ‘were an Indian tribe or sect called Kalani…'” (Anacalypsis, by Godfrey Higgins, Vol. I; p. 400.)

Martin Haug, Ph.D., wrote in The Sacred Language, Writings, and Religions of the Parsis, “The Magi are said to have called their religion Kesh-î-Ibrahim.They traced their religious books to Abraham, who was believed to have brought them from heaven.” (p. 16.)

There are certain striking similarities between the Hindu god Brahma and his consort Saraisvati, and the Jewish Abraham and Sarai, that are more than mere coincidences. Although in all of India there is only one temple dedicated to Brahma, this cult is the third largest Hindu sect.

In his book Moisés y los Extraterrestres, Mexican author Tomás Doreste states,

Voltaire was of the opinion that Abraham descended from some of the numerous Brahman priests who left India to spread their teachings throughout the world; and in support of his thesis he presented the following elements: the similarity of names and the fact that the city of Ur, land of the patriarchs, was near the border of Persia, the road to India, where that Brahman had been born.

The name of Brahma was highly respected in India, and his influence spread throughout Persia as far as the lands bathed by the rivers Euphrates and Tigris. The Persians adopted Brahma and made him their own. Later they would say that the God arrived from Bactria, a mountainous region situated midway on the road to India. (pp. 46-47.)

Bactria (a region of ancient Afghanistan) was the locality of a prototypical Jewish nation called Juhuda or Jaguda, also called Ur-Jaguda. Ur meant “place or town.” Therefore, the bible was correct in stating that Abraham came from “Ur of the Chaldeans.” “Chaldean,” more correctly Kaul-Deva (Holy Kauls), was not the name of a specific ethnicity but the title of an ancient Hindu Brahmanical priestly caste who lived in what are now Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the Indian state of Kashmir.

“The tribe of Ioud or the Brahmin Abraham, was expelled from or left the Maturea of the kingdom of Oude in India and, settling in Goshen, or the house of the Sun or Heliopolis in Egypt, gave it the name of the place which they had left in India, Maturea.” (Anacalypsis; Vol. I, p. 405.)

“He was of the religion or sect of Persia, and of Melchizedek.”(Vol. I, p. 364.)

“The Persians also claim Ibrahim, i.e. Abraham, for their founder, as well as the Jews. Thus we see that according to all ancient history the Persians, the Jews, and the Arabians are descendants of Abraham.(p.85) …We are told that Terah, the father of Abraham, originally came from an Eastern country called Ur, of the Chaldees or Culdees, to dwell in a district called Mesopotamia. Some time after he had dwelt there, Abraham, or Abram, or Brahma, and his wife Sara or Sarai, or Sara-iswati, left their father’s family and came into Canaan. The identity of Abraham and Sara with Brahma and Saraiswati was first pointed out by the Jesuit missionaries.”(Vol. I; p. 387.)

In Hindu mythology, Sarai-Svati is Brahm’s sister. The bible gives two stories of Abraham. In this first version, Abraham told Pharaoh that he was lying when he introduced Sarai as his sister. In the second version, he also told the king of Gerar that Sarai was really his sister. However, when the king scolded him for lying, Abraham said that Sarai was in reality both his wife and his sister! “…and yet indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife.” (Genesis 20:12.)

But the anomalies don’t end here. In India, a tributary of the river Saraisvati is Ghaggar. Another tributary of the same river is Hakra. According to Jewish traditions, Hagar was Sarai’s maidservant; the Moslems say she was an Egyptian princess. Notice the similarities of Ghaggar, Hakra and Hagar.

The bible also states that Ishmael, son of Hagar, and his descendants lived in India. “…Ishmael breathed his last and died, and was gathered to his kin… They dwelt from Havilah (India), by Shur, which is close to Egypt, all the way to Asshur.” (Genesis 25:17-18.) It is an interesting fact that the names of Isaac and Ishmael are derive from Sanskrit: (Hebrew) Ishaak = (Sanskrit) Ishakhu = “Friend of Shiva.” (Hebrew) Ishmael = (Sanskrit) Ish-Mahal = “Great Shiva.”

A third mini-version of the Abraham story turns him into another “Noah.” We know that a flood drove Abraham out of India. “…Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, your fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood in old time, Even Terah, the father of Abraham, and the father of Nachor; and they served other gods. And I took your father Abraham from the other side of the flood, and led him throughout all the land of Canaan.” (Joshua 24:2-3.)

Genesis 25 mentions some descendants of his concubine Ketura (Note: The Moslems claim that Ketura is another name of Hagar.): Jokshan; Sheba; Dedan; Epher. Some descendants of Noah were Joktan, Sheba, Dedan, and Ophir. These varying versions have caused me to suspect that the writers of the bible were trying to unite several different branches of Judaism.

About 1900 BC, the cult of Brahm was carried to the Middle and Near East by several different Indian groups after a severe rainfall and earthquake tore Northern India apart, even changing the courses of the Indus and Saraisvati rivers. The classical geographer Strabo tells us just how nearly complete the abandonment of Northwestern India was. “Aristobolus says that when he was sent upon a certain mission in India, he saw a country of more than a thousand cities, together with villages, that had been deserted because the Indus had abandoned its proper bed.” (Strabo’s Geography, XV.I.19.)

The drying up of the Sarasvati around 1900 BCE, which led to a major relocation of the population centered around in the Sindhu and the Sarasvati valleys, could have been the event that caused a migration westward from India. It is soon after this time that the Indic element begins to appear all over West Asia, Egypt, and Greece.” (Indic Ideas in the Graeco-Roman World, by Subhash Kak, taken from IndiaStar online literary magazine; p.14)

Indian historian Kuttikhat Purushothama Chon believes that Abraham was driven out of India. He states that the Aryans, unable to defeat the Asuras (The mercantile caste that once ruled in the Indus Valley or Harappans) spent so many years fighting covertly against the Asuras, such as destroying their huge system of irrigation lakes, causing destructive flooding, that Abraham and his kindred just gave up and marched to West Asia. (See Remedy the Frauds in Hinduism.) Therefore, besides being driven out of Northern India by floods, the Aryans also forced Indian merchants, artisans, and educated classes to flee to West Asia.

Edward Pococke writes in India in Greece,

“…in no similar instance have events occurred fraught with consequences of such magnitude, as those flowing from the great religious war which, for a long series of years, raged throughout the length and breadth of India. That contest ended by the expulsion of vast bodies of men; many of them skilled in the arts of early civilization, and still greater numbers, warriors by profession. Driven beyond the Himalayan mountains in the north, and to Ceylon, their last stronghold in the south, swept across the Valley of the Indus on the west, this persecuted people carried with them the germs of the European arts and sciences. The mighty human tide that passed the barrier of the Punjab, rolled on towards its destined channel in Europe and in Asia, to fulfill its beneficent office in the moral fertilization of the world.the distance of the migratory movement was so vast, the disguise of names so complete, and Grecian information so calculated to mislead, that nothing short of a total disregard of theoretic principles, and the resolution of independent research, gave the slightest chance of a successful elucidation.” (p. 28.)

If all these refugee ruling peoples were exclusively of Indian heritage, why doesn’t History mention them?

The exodus of refugees out of ancient India did not occur all at once but over a period of one or more thousand years. If all these refugee ruling peoples were exclusively of Indian heritage, why doesn’t History mention them? Indeed they are mentioned as Kassites, Hittites, Syrians, Assyrians, Hurrians, Arameans, Hyksos, Mittanians, Amalekites, Aethiops (Atha-Yop), Phoenicians, Chaldeans, and many others. But we have been wrongly taught to regard them as ethnicities indigenous to Western Asia. Our history books also call them “Indo-Europeans,” causing us to wonder where they were really from. “The people of India came to realize their social identity in terms of Varna and Jati (societal functions or caste); not in terms of races and tribes.” (Foundations of Indian Culture; p. 8.)

Here’s an example of how the ancient Indians identified people: The leaders were called Khassis (Kassites), Kushi (Kushites), Cossacks (Russian military caste) Caesars (Roman ruling caste), Hattiya (Hittites), Cuthites (a dialectical form of Hittite), Hurrite (another dialectical form of Hittite), Cathay (Chinese leaders), Kasheetl/Kashikeh among the Aztecs, Kashikhel/Kisheh by the Mayans, and Keshuah/Kush by the Incas. The Assyrians (in English), Asirios (in Spanish), Asuras or Ashuras (India), Ashuriya, Asuriya (Sumer and Babylonia), Asir (Arabia), Ahura (Persia), Suré in Central Mexico, etc., were people who worshipped Surya (the Sun).

Naturally, in areas where this religion prevailed, they were known as “Assyrians,” no matter what the real names of their respective kingdoms were.

Another problem that western scholars have in identifying the Indo-Europeans as Indians is that India was not then and never was a nation. Furthermore, it is not “India.” It is Bharata, and even Bharata is not a nation. Bharata is a collection of nations, just as Europe is a collection of nations, presently held together by the real or perceived threat of Moslem expansionism. Indian scholars have told me that when and if this expansionism ever disappears, the “Bharata Union” will again splinter into many smaller nations.

“The Arabian historians contend that Brahma and Abraham, their ancestor, are the same person. The Persians generally called Abraham Ibrahim Zeradust. Cyrus considered the religion of the Jews the same as his own. The Hindoos must have come from Abraham, or the Israelites from Brahma…” (Anacalypsis; Vol. I, p. 396.) 

This is but only one example of how ugly politics has interfered in the discoveries of ancient heritage that would reinforce the antiquity and brilliance of Indian, Vedic and thus Hindu civilization, solely because it would establish Hindu glory.  

A section of our historians, patronized by the government that ruled post independent India for ninety percent of the last sixty years, would like us to believe that history of India started with the fictitious, sword-swinging, horse-riding, nomadic, fair-skinned, blue- eyed Aryans invading India from ‘the land of nowhere’ and driving away the existing native Dravidians down South.

Any history before that is superstition or mythology. It is especially so if it is of Hindu interest.

One wonders what revolution it will take to bring out the truth about the past glories of India. Why can’t modern scientific methods be applied honestly to prove or disprove the claims made about the Ram Sethu or the Taj Mahal or the Babri Masjid. Why should such effort be given political and communal color? Why should such truth be concealed from public?

Past truth may be bitter but ‘modern secular India’ has to face it someday.

 

Sarasvati project is on, under a new name

  

NEW DELHI: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has quietly continued with its controversial search for the mythical river Sarasvati despite strong disapproval from the UPA government.

Though the project has been officially denied funding, parts of it have been relabelled the Ghaggar project to continue with the research.

The Ghaggar is an “intermittent river” that flows westwards during the monsoons from Himachal Pradesh towards Rajasthan.

The Sarasvati heritage project was launched in 2003-04 by Jagmohan, culture and tourism minister in the BJP-led NDA government, to prove that the Sarasvati mentioned in the Rig Veda was the same as the lost river connected to the Harappan civilisation.

The project had strong support from the Sangh Parivar and Hindu historians for obvious reasons. Left and non-Sangh Parivar historians do not deny the existence of a dried up river near old Harappan sites, but say that it would be a stretch to connect this river to the mythical Sarasvati. Not unlike the Adam’s Bridge-Ram Setu controversy, this is another project where faith muddies the waters of research.

In November 2003, Parliament’s standing committee on tourism, culture and transport, which had begun an inquiry into ASI’s functioning, sought details on the project. With a change in government at the centre in May 2004, funds were withdrawn and the project was officially abandoned.

But the ASI funded the project from its own resources. “We wanted to bring the search to a logical conclusion,” RS Bisht, former joint director, ASI, who coordinated the project during the NDA regime, told DNA

 

 Is Ghaggar Sarasvati? It depends whom you ask 

   

ASI camouflaged the search for Sarasvati to make it palatable to the new political dispensation

NEW DELHI: Despite strong disapproval from the UPA government, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) decided to go ahead with its controversial search for the mythical river Sarasvati.

Enquiries by DNA based on a detailed perusal of official documents and extensive interviews with a cross-section of ASI officials show that the ASI has effectively camouflaged the search for Sarasvati.

“The project has been kept going by renaming it to make it palatable to the new political dispensation at the centre, and by breaking it into several smaller projects across Haryana, Gujarat and Rajasthan,” said a senior official of the ASI, who declined to be identified. Bisht confirms this. “It was suggested by many people that to counter Leftist propaganda we should call the Sarasvati (project) as Ghaggar in future proposals.”

Like Ram Setu, there are deep divisions among historians and archaeologists over the existence of the river Sarasvati. While Left and mainstream historians point out that there is no evidence to show that the river ever existed, right-wing scholars argue that Harappan civilisation’s lost river was indeed the Sarasvati.

“Ghaggar is Sarasvati,” asserts S Kalyanaraman, director of the privately-funded Sarasvati Research Centre, Chennai. Outside the Sangh Parivar, the consensus is that there is indeed a lost river from the Harappan civilisation, but it has been identified as the original and bigger version of today’s Ghaggar.

“The underlying historical assumption made by a section of ASI officials is that the mythical Sarasvati and the real Ghaggar are one and the same. No scientific evidence to prove this has ever been found,” says Dr RS Fonia, director, exploration and excavation, ASI.

The ASI admitted before a standing committee of the Parliament that “no academic body or university has recommended the project.” The Parliamentary standing committee asked the ASI not to pursue such projects, yet excavations continued.

 

 “We are part of the Sarasvati civilisation” 

 

S Kalyanaraman, a PhD in Public Administration, University of Philippines, and director of the privately-funded Sarasvati Research Centre in Chennai, spoke to DNA on the Archaeological Survey of India’s findings, and why he thinks the mythical river mentioned in the Rig Veda is none other than the Ghaggar.

The ASI conducted excavations envisaged in the Sarasvati heritage project with its own money. What are the findings that you know of?

Bhirrana is a remarkable excavation. The discoveries there point to the possibility of identifying the Vedic people. This site shows that the origins of civilisation are in the Sarasvati river valley, circa 6000 BC. There are as yet unexcavated sites which are larger than Harappa or Mohenjodaro in Bhatinda, Gurnikalan, and Lakhmirwala.

If that is the case, then why does not the ASI go ahead with these plans?

 They should. Unfortunately, Jaipal Reddy (information minister) and Ambika Soni (the culture minister) assisted by Sitaram Yechury (of the CPM) have killed Jagmohan’s systematic approach. A section of ASI officials who believe in the Sarasvati are quietly working on it by calling it Ghaggar in their proposals.

Has the river been found?

The river has been found, foot by foot; unfortunately ASI doesn’t talk to the ministry of water resources and the regional remote sensing services centre at Jodhpur (ISRO) to get the details of the scientific seminar on the subject. Ghaggar is Sarasvati.

The ASI should read the brilliant work by the most eminent Himalayan ecologist, Prof KS Valdiya, ‘Sarasvati: The River That Disappeared’. It is a brilliant scientific document which can provide a basis for a journey into the past along the Sarasvati river basin of periods prior to 2000, before the common era.

But there is considerable dispute about whether Sarasvati is the lost river of the Harappan civilisation. Isn’t it?

Romila Thapar (historian) asked KS Valdiya, “OK, professor, you have found the river, but how do you say she is Sarasvati?” The professor replied: “OK, madam, you look like a woman, but how do you know you are Romila? Our ancient texts, our mothers are emphatic that a mighty river Sarasvati drained in Bharatam.”

So then, does this mean the Indus Valley civilisation and the Vedic civilisation or Sarasvati civilisation are one?

 Yes. Indus valley was so called because the site Mohenjodaro was on the river Sindhu (Indus). Now that over 2,000 of the 2,600 sites are found to be on the river Sarasvati, the civilisation should be called the Sarasvati civilisation. It is a continuum into Bharatiya sabhyataa (culture). Every Bharatiya is a child of Sarasvati ancestors. I have proved it in eight volumes. Let Yechury and company read them and come back to me for a debate. ISRO’s map of river Sarasvati adorns the PM’s office and is shown to foreign dignitaries with pride.

Do you think that the ASI is an ideologically divided institution?

Yes. Ideologically driven politicians control ASI. The river’s presence is so dominant, that Sarasvati cannot be wished away by mere name-change. Ghaggar is river Sarasvati’s ancient channel.