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Mesolithic site discovered in southern India

T. Murugeshi, associate professor of ancient history and archaeology, MSRS College, Shirva has discovered a promising Mesolithic site at Iduru-Kunjadi in Kundapur taluk, Udupi district in the state of Karnataka, southwest India. This site is close to the rock art site of the Mesolithic period that Murugeshi had been reported earlier in 2019. The site is located in the Mookambika wildlife reserve forest.

Mesolithic site discovered in southern India
Mesolithic stone tools from Iduru-Kunjadi [Credit: TNN]
From a geological and environmental point of view, the west coast of Karnataka is akin to that of Kerala and Konkan. As many as 23 sites with Mesolithic spread were discovered by L S Rao of ASI Branch in 1992-93, 14 sites by Shivtarak, two each by Murugeshi and Rajendran P and one by Raghavendra Shenoy. Murugeshi has earlier reported a unique Mesolithic Rock Art site with microliths spread at Avalakkipare. It is the only such site in coastal Karnataka.

At Iduru-Kunjadi, finds of Mesolithic tools characterised by blades, scrapers, burine, fluted cores, arrowheads and flakes are of non-geometric pattern. They resemble totally the tools found in a stratigraphic context at Uppinangady on the Nethravathi basin in Dakshina Kannada district. Rajendran had assigned the date of Uppinangady site to earlier than 4000 BC. Murugeshi said the Iduru-Kunjadi site is assignable to 6000 BC.

On analysing the rock art displayed at Avalakkipare, a conclusion can be drawn that Iduru-Kunjadi is just an extension of Avalakkipare site. The Iduru-Kunjadi site even today has a huge grazing plain of a variety of animals like wild buffaloes, wild boars, deers and other animals, which supposedly might have been a hunting plain in prehistoric times. Murugeshi in February 2019 had announced discovery of petroglyphs of prehistoric importance near Kollur.

Author: Jaideep Shenoy | Source: Time of India [June 10, 2020]


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