Excavation resumes at Adichanallur and Sivakalai sites

Work was suspended due to lockdown

The excavation of ancient civilisation sites at Adichanallur and Sivakalai in Thoothukudi district resumed on Thursday after being suspended in May due to the COVID-19 lockdown.

The Department of Archaeology resumed the second phase of the excavation at Adichanallur and Sivakalai and started the first phase at Korkkai on February 26 this year. But the work was halted on May 10 as an intense lockdown came into force across Tamil Nadu.

Burial urns were found at the first two sites, while 2,700-year-old brick works and the remnants of a conch-cutting unit were found at Korkkai.

Work expedited

The excavation resumed after the curbs were eased. Since the Union government has given permission for excavation till September, the Department of Archaeology has expedited the work.

Writer Muththaalankurichi Kamarasu, who petitioned the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court for excavation at Adichanallur, Sivakalai and Korkkai, said it should be done at 37 spots cited by a British archaeologist as “archaeologically important areas”. Though the Tamil Nadu government has appointed officials and allotted funds, the excavation is yet to gain momentum.

“The recent rain has brought to light burial urns in the Vasavappapuram area on the Tirunelveli-Thoothukudi border, which should be excavated. The Tamil Nadu government should also take steps to locate the buried temples at Kongarayakurichi, near Srivaikundam, on the banks of the Thamirabarani,” Mr. Kamarasu said.

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