Excavation likely to locate Kapilavastu, the ancient Shakya kingdom in Nepal

The birthplace of Lord Buddaha (Bishnu Gautam)

The ongoing excavation in Tilaurakot, the capital of ancient Shakya kingdom, is likely to prove with scientific evidences that the palace of king Suddhodhana was in Kapilvastu of Nepal. Lord Buddha was born to Shakya king Suddhodhana of Kapilvastu some 2600 years ago.

At a time when a section of Indian scholars have been claiming in the international forums that  Kapilvastu, the capital city of the Shakya kings is in India, the new findings would be a big achievement for Nepal.  At least, the findings would end all controversies created by the Indians regarding the location of Kapilvastu. 

Various archeologists and experts have been carrying out excavation works in the ancient Tilaurakot Palace, also known as Shakya capital where Siddhartha spent his 29 years of life.

The second phase excavation in Tilaurakot is being conducted in the support of the UNSECO and the Japanese Funds-in-Trusts.

Prof. Dr. Robin Coningham of Durham University, UK, carefully removing soil that has covered the bricks of the walls of Shakya Palace in Tilaurakot. (Basant Giri)

The team comprises experts and archaeologists from the Lumbini Development Trust, Department of Archaeology and Durham University of England. 

Pro vice -chancellor of Durham University Prof. Dr. Robin Coningham, former director general of the Department of Archaeology Kosh Prasad Acharya, former chief archaeologist of the Lumbini Development Trust Basanta Bidari and chief archaeologist of the DOA Ram Bahadur Kunwar among others have been carrying out the excavation works.
   
Former director general of the Department of Archeology Department Kosh Prasad Acharya said that the excavation would establish scientific fact regarding Kapilvastu..

Before this, Indian archeologist Devala Mitra had carried out an excavation in Tilaurakot in 1962. Indian archaeologist P. C. Mukherji had discovered Tilaurakot in 1899.

However, Mitra had presented a false report. Her excavation report was dragged to controversy when the ancient remnants collected during the excavation were lost. The findings traced by Mitra were also said to be with many errors.

According to Bidari, the excavation is being carried out in a totally different way. “This time, we have applied the first scientific method while carrying out excavation in entire South Asia,” he said.

“The excavation will end all confusions regarding Tilaurakot establishing Tilaurakot as real Kapilvastu across the world,” he added.

He further said that the excavation carried out at the fortification walls have also proved Tilaurakot as the capital of Shakya kings.

Tilaurakot has been mentioned as the capital of the Shakya kings in various Buddhist scripts. According to Kunwar, the excavation will continue for three years.

 

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