Amateur archaeologist discovers ‘cup markers, stone circles' in India

Amateur archaeologist discovers ‘cup markers, stone circles' in India

PanARMENIAN.Net - Prakash Dolas, head of Rajiv Gandhi Science and Technology Commission (RGSTC), Nagpur, has discovered ‘cup markers’ (cupules) and ‘stone circles’ on temple structures as well as in the vicinity of the temples, near the Lonar Crater Lake in Buldhana district, The Times of India reports.

Dolas claims he is the first person to have discovered them, since there are no records of these in the archeological findings so far, nor has the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), which has a presence on the site, formally reported it. He is unaware of the scientific importance of these cupules and the stone circles, but has indirectly got some information from some researchers.

“I had been to Lonar two years back and happened to discover the cupules and stone circles, as I have an interest in archaeology, and since then I am working on these findings. I had been to Junapani near Nagpur, where such circles were found, with astrophysicist Prof Mayank Vahiya. So, I know how they look. But I will soon be formally confirming the authenticity of the latest findings with ASI,” said Dolas.

Dolas says that a fascinating aspect of the discovery is that the cup marks found across the Lonar region, at least ten on each megalith, are all associated with religious structures. A single monument (Limpi Barav, an exquisitely built stepwell) accounts for more than 100 such megaliths! Secondly, there is a distinct possibility that the cup marks were carved in two distinct epochs, those at Motha Maruti Temple, for example, appear more recent. In addition, one stone circle has been discovered on a mound between Gomukh and Paap-Hareshwar Temples near the NNE corner of the crater rim. There are no cup marks on any of them. This particular find certainly requires careful study, including excavation, for authentication, he said.

TOI spoke to a senior serving archaeologist at ASI, who said the cupules discovered at the ASI protected monument at Pahareshwar, and the adjoining unfinished megalithic slab circle in the adjacent open land are indeed interesting finds. However, many secular and non-secular edifices in the Vidarbha region have beautiful arrangement of cupules or cup marks strewn over various parts of their build, he said.

This can well be understood as cupules could very well be made on basalt, and most of the monuments are made of basalt, made by the people of yore. Studies are going on to understand their proper relevance and significance. Vidarbha is a region famous for varieties of megalithic stone circles. The present findings are good but are not spectacularly significant say experts, since this discovery is new but there are many such findings in the region.

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