Ancient Christian Relic Found in Skardu by Expedition Team
According to the team from University of Baltistan, the huge cross was found around two kilometres from the base camp, located high in the mountains of Kavardo village in Skardu of Baltistan division.
On June 14, it was announced that an ancient Christian relic was found on a mountain in Skardu by an expedition team from University of Baltistan.
The research and expedition team including Professor Dr Muhammad Naeem Khan, Dr Zakir Hussain Zakir and Dr Ishtiaq Hussain Maqpoon visited the site in order to study an ancient Christian relic (a marble cross) along with local villagers and mountain guides in Skardu.
According to the team, the huge cross was found around two kilometres from the base camp, located high in the mountains of Kavardo village in Skardu of Baltistan division. The ancient Christian relic is made of marble rock material and weighing more than three to four tonnes (approximately seven by six feet in size).
Furthermore, the team stated that the cross could be 900-1,000 years old, perhaps signifying the time when Buddhism was in decline in the region and Islam was to later emerge in the Himalayan and Karakoram valleys.
The researchers said they are assuming that the cross is made of a rock that could go back as far as the Middle Ages, while the Kavardo village is said to have come into existence 1,500 years ago.
The expedition team speculated that the design of the ancient cross, with unequal arms, seems influenced by Buddhist carving traditions and could be the work of Buddhist converts.
This is the first time a discovery has marked an association of this land with Christianity. Dr Zakir Hussain Zakir speculated that this possibly indicated the presence of Europeans in these valleys.
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