New findings highlight glory of ancient Hund city -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

New findings highlight glory of ancient Hund city

SWABI: The provincial archaeology and museums directorate has found remains of houses, coins and household articles of Hindu Shahi dynasty in Hund area of Swabi district during the latest excavation.

Asif Raza, in charge of Hund Museum, told Dawn on Friday that excavation in Hund, one of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s major archaeological sites, began in June 1996 after inauguration by archaeologist late Dr AH Dani and then provincial culture secretary Arshad Sami Khan.

He said Hund city was developed on the bank of the River Indus and washed away by flooding.

“The actual name of Hund is Udabhandapura. Alexander came here in 327BC. He crossed the River Indus in Hund when one of his generals prepared a boat bridge.

“Famous Chinese pilgrim Hiuen Tsang passed through this area in 644AD. After Peshawar and Charsadda, it was the third capital of the Hindu Shahi dynasty,” he said.

Mr Raza said beautiful houses, coins, jewellery and other household articles of the Indo-Greek and Hindu Shahi eras had been found during excavation.

“We’ve also discovered parts of the city’s boundary walls,” he said.

The in charge of the museum said the government had taken numerous steps to develop the place into a tourist attraction.

“In 2002, 33 kanals of land was acquired for the establishment of Hund Museum. And once it was there, a monument of Alexander was put in place to remember his sojourn to Hund,” he said. He added that a rest house and a bypass road to the museum had also been built.

Mr Raza said many other historical places in the district had also been excavated.

“The entire exercise was carried out to determine the exact cultural profile of the people of ancient times. It helped Hund regain its lost fame and glory,” he said.

The in charge of the museum said buildings of Kushana, Hindu Shahi and Islamic eras were found during excavations.

“The houses and other building of Kushanas and Hindu Shahi periods showed the marvel engineering know-how of the people of ancient times. They had beautiful rooms and halls, rows of pillars, steps, floors levels and ovens. The places where they existed had gorgeous gateways and planned streets,” he said.

Mr Raza said drainage system found in Hund turned out to be the most developed of that time. “We’ve found such a drainage system at places excavated so far in the world,” he said.

The in charge of the museum said the facility would pull in large crowds from within the country and abroad in future.

Dawn