Ballari: Carved stone columns dating back to the 15th century Vijayanagar empire period were unearthed while widening the ancient Kamalapur tank bund road in the core zone of the UNESCO world heritage site Hampi.
The schist stone pillars with carvings of elephants approaching a tree, symbolizing elephants in a forest were unearthed while heavy earth movers were engaged in widening the 14th century built Kamalapur tank. The ancient pillars were dumped on the roadside much to the anger of historians.
As per the Archeological Survey of India norms, using heavy earth moving machines in ancient sites is prohibited, despite this rule, the PWD has engaged heavy earth movers.
This ancient tank is under the jurisdiction of Hampi World Heritage Area Management Authority.
When contacted, Mr Manjya Naik, archeologist with state archeological department said that an investigation needs to be conducted to find if these ancient pillars were part of a temple or a watch tower in the Vijayanagar era. "But no temple in Hampi is built of schist stone and is built with granite stone. Further, it is difficult to rebuild the original structure with these remnants, since there are no other remnants than four five pillars. So, we are considering shifting the pillars to our museum," he said....