A French team of archaeologists, headed by Dr. Aurore Didier is already working at Chahu Jo Daro where several new artifacts have been found.
Ahmed Khan Khushik
Consul General of France Alexis Chahtahinsky said that his country will continue to provide technical support to the Sindh Department of Antiquities for excavation and research at archaeological sites.
“More technical support will be provided at Chahu Jo Daro and other archaeological sites in Sindh to explore the rich history,” he said during a meeting with Sindh Education and Culture Minister Syed Sardar Ali Shah at his office in Karachi.
French Envoy said that at the World Donors Conference, 350 million dollar aid was first announced by France.
An official of Culture, Tourism and Antiquities Department briefed the meeting about the research work of UNESCO experts at Mohen Jo Daro and excavation by French Archeologists at Chahu Jo Daro.
According to a press release issued by the Culture, Tourism and Archeology Department, both sides agreed to continue the efforts to increase communication and cooperation in promoting cultural activities in Sindh.
Sindh Education and Culture Minister Sardar Ali Shah said, “Excavation and research at Chahu Jo Daro by the team of archeologists, especially Dr. Aurore Didier, have been very fruitful.”
“Due to the cooperation of French archeologists, it helped to establish the museum at Chahu Jo Daro,” he said.
Sardar Shah said that in Sindh, now after Mohin Jo Daro, the antiquities found at Chahu Jo Daro will be able to provide a platform for public awareness and research.
On this occasion, Archaeologist Dr. Aurore Didier said that she has also written articles in French language magazines to enlighten the people of France about the civilization of Sindh.
“Donors are informing communities ahead of a conference scheduled in France to mark Mohen jo Daro’s centenary celebrations.”
“Donors also need to make communities aware of the need for international cooperation to protect monuments affected by climate change,” said Dr. Arori Didier.
Culture Minister Sardar Shah presented gift of lungi and books to Consul General Alexis Chahtahinsky and Dr. Aurore Didier.
It may be recalled that two days back, UNESCO experts joined Dr. Aurore Didier, Head of French Archaeological mission in excavation at Chahu Jo Daro.
UNESCO expert, Mr. Thierry Joffroy, the Cultural Head of UNESCO Pakistan, Ms. Cristina Menegazzi and Mr. Jawad Aziz visited the Archaeological site of Chahunjo Daro. They also visited the museum and discussed the possibility of providing technical assistance to the department with Dr. Aurore Didier.
Mr. Thierry Joffroy, Ms. Cristina Menegazzi and Mr. Jawad Aziz witnessed the excavation going on in collaboration with French Archaeological mission.
The delegation expressed the interest in the training of site staff and university students of University of Sindh, Mehran University of Engineering and Technology Jamshoro, Aror University of Arts Architecture, Design and Heritages Sukkur and other universities as well.
Mr. Thierry Joffroy suggested using geo-textile for covering the site for protection from floods in future. With his experience, he shared techniques on how to further protect the site from salt as it is one of the major problems of Indus period sites in Sindh.
Ms. Cristina Menegazzi, who has a vast experience in museum management and was also associated with ICOM the international council of museums, discussed the future collaboration avenue with Ms. Zahida Quadri who is the present Chair of ICOM ICR and the Assistant Director.
They agreed on training and awareness to support museum workers to understand how museums in Sindh can further contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals and International committee for regional museums as well.
“More areas were outlined and excavation was started and more new artifacts were found resembling Mohen Jo Daro since the current excavation started in January 2023 at Chahu Jo Daro site,” Ms. Zahida Quadri, Head of Pakistan excavation team said.
Meanwhile, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany Dr. Rüdiger Lotz has said that Sindh has treasures of rich history and it is amazing to see the ancient Ranikot fort.
He said that Ranikot fort was constructed with all aspects and it is one the best constructions across the world with multipurpose aspects.
Dr. Rüdiger Lotz and his wife Mrs. Ivana Lotz visited Ranikot Fort on two days back. .
The officials of Culture, Tourism and Archeology department also accompanied them during visit of Ranikot fort. They visited the Ranikot wall, Meri kot and other parts of Ranikot fort.
Meanwhile, an official told this scribe that two bridges were proposed to construct at Ranikot fort area to protect and facilitate the tourists – one of them at Sann gate in front of Ranikot fort and other to connect the Sann gate and Meri Kot.
He said that rest house at Ranikot fort will be expanded to facilitate the tourists and Summary of 32km road was submitted to CM Sindh for repair and widening of road from main Indus Highway Sann town to Sann gate of Ranikot.
Rs.3000 million demand was submitted to Planning and Development Department Sindh for restoration and conservation of archeological sites and monuments in Sindh along with Ranikot fort, official told.