Chariots of Sinauli

An excavation is an interesting activity. It reveals the hidden treasures of history that we might have overlooked. Historians across the world seem to be in awe of any new site that is excavated. After all, an excavation is the only way to confirm the already existing theories. If the revelations by the new excavation are in line with what was earlier theorized, things stay simple.

Excavation site at Sinauli. Picture credit – thewire.in

However, if there is something that contradicts the existing theories, things tend to get complicated !

It has been believed by the Historians that almost half of the Indian population traces back to Central Asian invaders. Its called Aryan Invasion theory.

A bit about it – Indians, particularly the majority population of Hindus, revere Vedic texts as a prized possession of their culture. The texts are a compilation of immense knowledge in matter and mind. It has been believed by Western Historians that the Aryans, who wrote Vedas, had come to India as invaders from Central Asia.

Holy Vedas

Their logic is that Vedic texts mention horse which does not show up in any of the excavations of the civilizations that predate the Aryan invasion. e.g. Excavations of Harappa Civilization that predates the Aryan Invasion, reveals clay seals of bulls, men, women, other animals but no signs of horses. This implies that horses were brought to the Indian Subcontinent by Aryans from Central Asia. This theory has been considered as a part of propaganda by Westerners to declare the origin of Vedas being Central Asia(outside India).

Aryans invaded Indian lands and made it their home.

In 2005 and later in 2018, the excavations carried out in Sanauli (Bagpat District, Uttar Pradesh, India) seem to tell a different story. The excavations at the Sanauli site revealed burials of people that seem to be warriors. The burials seem to be conducted with extravagance. Copper pottery, gold bracelets, terracotta statues, shield and arrows have been found in the burials. The craftsmanship of the buried items is quite impressive. For instance, the make of the shield is such that it could bend under a forceful hit but would not break. Clearly fulfilling its purpose while being light weight. This speaks volumes about the knowledge of science and warfare that the craftsmen had.

Excavation site at Sinauli – picture credit outlook.com, thehindu.com

Another interesting thing that has been excavated is a chariot. the chariot too has an elaborate design. It is a compact carriage that could only accommodate a single warrior. The size and structure of the chariot hint at the chariot being used for a warfare.

Remains of a chariot found at the site. Pictures credit outlook.com and thehindu.com

What seems to steal the thunder here is the fact that given the size of the chariot it cold only be drawn by a horse. With this revelation, several historians believe that the westerners theory of Aryans being the creators of Vedas is refuted.

The excavation has surely raised several questions. As a layman, it does not impact us. How does it matter if the Vedas were written by Aryans or an aboriginal race that has been exiting in the Indian subcontinenent before the Aryans arrived.

However, if one walks around the labyrinth of history, one wonders how influenced our historical accounts must be from the political and social factors. Could it be true that Aryan & Vedic association is a mere political propaganda by westerners to rob Indians off the pride of being the original creators of Vedas. Though it must be mentioned here that in India, people do not differentiate based upon Aryan and Non Aryan/Dravidian races. Aryan/Non Aryan or Dravidian is a mere classification done by historians.

There are several such historical accounts that are contradictory.

Probably, the contradictions culminate in complication when we tend to take our past way too seriously!

2 replies to “Chariots of Sinauli

  1. Arya only means/meant noble, like I call you a gentleman. Well, after simply understanding, observing how things were commissioned and took place during British times, it comes out that there were nothing called aryans, invasion had to be made up as christian missionaries could not stand a culture or people who were talking thousands of years back and before christ. Anyways, aome excavations did come close to naming a horse instead they submitted it was a bull and such theories have been prevalent ever since.

    Liked by 1 person

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