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Pakistan’s “Moenjodaro” Facing Uncertain Future

Posted on Oct, 25, 2013
Contributed to WCHV by Danielle
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Mohenjo-daro

It is widely believed by archeologists that the city of Moenjodaro in southern Pakistan was remarkably advanced for its time, with sophisticated civil engineering and urban planning, and because of its size and the richness of its monuments, has been generally regarded as a capital of an extensive state.

Moenjodaro, which means “the mound of the dead’ was a major center of the pre-Hindu Indus civilization dating back to 3000 BC and one of the earliest cities in the world.  Archeologists estimate that over 40,000 people lived in Moenjodaro and the city which was rediscovered in 1922 has had extensive excavations but only one third of the site has been revealed so far.  The stupa mound, built on a massive platform of mud brick, is composed of the ruins of several major structures – Great bath, Great Granary, College Square and Pillared Hall – as well as a number of private homes.  The extensive lower city is a complex of private and public houses, wells, shops and commercial buildings.  These buildings are laid out along streets intersecting reach other at right angles, in a highly form of city planning that also incorporated important systems of sanitation and drainage (UNESCO).

However, the site which was  designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980 is now facing major environmental threats from extreme summer heat and high temperatures, winter frosts, torrential rains and humid air as reported by the Telegraph newspaper.  The structures which are mostly made of clay bricks (hardened unbaked mud bricks) have greatly been damaged by the humidity during the monsoon season, and salt crystals blown and deposited on the clay has caused extensive breakage and damage to the structures.  All of these environmental factors have caused this significant archeological site to literally crumble. 

 

It is also greatly believed that there is a lot more funding needed to help to preserve and maintain the site otherwise, Pakistan’s “Moenjodaro” will face an uncertain future. 

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