The department of Archives, Archaeology and Museums Kashmir has found a rare stone sculpture of lord Shiva at Wachi Shopian, a government statement said on Wednesday. The sculpture was unearthed from the river bed of Nallah Rambara at Malhora during an event of Sand extraction of the site. The find was then collected by the concerned DPO Wachi, who informed the Archaeology department. The experts from the department of archaeology inspected the site and collected the artifact.
The departmental experts investigating the find have described find a big achievement in the field of Kashmir sculpture history. The sculpture has been identified as Lord Shiva, shown wearing three peaked crown. The sculpture has broken arms and legs depicting Shiva with a third eye on its forehead. The sculpture has been dated to the 9th century AD and has close resemblance with the Vishnu sculptures found earlier from Awantipur.
It is in place to mention here that a well advanced sculpture art school flourished at Awantipora during the reign of Raja Awantivarman in the early 9th century AD, but this school mostly produced the sculptures of Vishnu school of thought and Vikunta Vishnu turned to be the most impressive sculpture of this era. There are several such sculptures of Vikunta Vishnu preserved in the State Museum at Lalmandi which are recorded here to have been found from Awantipura.
However, there has been no such sculpture evidence from Wachi area of south Kashmir in the archaeological records of the state. The locals claim that there has been no archaeological survey of this area, they have demanding for conducting of the archaeological survey of this area to explore the “hidden treasures” in Wachi.
Although there has been no earlier evidence of any antiquity to have been found in this area but the village is famous for the ancient Khanqah which is believed to have been founded here by Syed Mir Mohammad Hamadani in the 15th century AD.