Stalin inaugurates 8th phase of Keeladi excavations

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Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin on Friday virtually inaugurated, the eighth phase of the Keeladi archaeological excavations.

Stalin said that the excavations would continue till September and recalled the archaeological excavations in the past that had brought to light the urbanisation of a society that lived centuries ago in multiple locations in the present-day Tamil Nadu.

The excavations at Konthagai, Agaram, and Manalur in Sivaganga district were also inaugurated on Friday.

The Chief Minister also inaugurated the second phase of excavations at Gangaikondacholapuram and Malaigamedu in the Ariyalur district of Tamil Nadu.

In January 2022, Chief Minister had announced that archaeological excavations would be conducted in seven locations across the state. Keeladi and nearby areas in Sivaganga district (Phase VIII), Sivagalai in Thoothukudi district (Phase III), Gangaikondacholapuram in Airyalur district (Phase II), Vembakottai in Virudhunagar (Phase I), Thullukarpatti in Tirunelveli district (Phase I), and Perumpalai in Dharmapuri district (Phase I).

A statement from the Tamil Nadu archaeological department said: “The eighth phase of explorations would be aimed at exploring any continuation of the brick constructions discovered at Keeladi, any objects hiding at commercial links or urban civilizations.”

The Chief Minister also said that a reconnaissance survey in the sea off the Korkai coast in Thoothukudi district mentioned in Sangam literature would be undertaken by the Tamil Nadu Archaeological Department in collaboration with the Indian Maritime University and National Institute of Ocean Technology.

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