The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is all set to resume excavation at Delhi’s Purana Qila. This will be the third season of excavation at Purana Qila after excavations during 2013-14 and 2017-18.
The latest excavation will be led by senior archaeologist Vasant Swarnkar. The objective of the excavation is the exposure and preservation of trenches that were excavated in the previous years (2013-14 and 2017-18). During the closure of the previous season’s excavation, evidence of layers predating the Mauryan period was found.
During this season’s excavation, the focus will be to accomplish the traces of Painted Grey Ware finding in stratigraphic context. Identified as an ancient settlement of Indraprastha, a continuous habitation of 2500 years at Purana Qila was established in the earlier excavations.
The findings and artefacts unearthed in earlier excavations comprise painted grey ware, belonging to 900 BC, an earthen pottery sequence from Maurya to Shunga, Kushana, Gupta, Rajput, Sultanates and Mughal periods.
Excavated Artefacts such as sickles, parers, terracotta toys, kiln-burnt bricks, beads, terracotta figurines, seals and dealings etc. excavated earlier, are now displayed at the Archaeological Museum inside the fort complex.
Purana Qila, the 16th-century fort, was built by Sher Shah Suri and second Mughal emperor Humayun. The fort is standing on a site with thousands of years of history. Padma Vibhushana Prof B B Lal also carried out excavation works inside the fort and its premises in 1954 and 1969-73.