Govt committed to preserving heritage sites: CM

MAKLI: Archaeologist Dr Kaleemullah Lashari has said Makli is the wealth of the written world. “It takes us to the past. It has sacred texts and has also funeral statements,” he said, adding that the only link between these structures and us is the inscriptions on them.

Lashari was speaking at the first International Conference on Makli in Thatta on Saturday.

According to him, Makli is a miracle of written work and a museum of calligraphy. There are 42 different surahs inscribed on the structures in Makli, he said, adding that they were not randomly selected – one can trace the date of demise of rulers through surahs.

During his inaugural address, Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah assured that whatever recommendations come out from the two-day conference would be adopted and implemented.

According to him, the government is committed to preserving and promoting heritage sites in the province. “There are hundreds of thousands of stories buried in Makli necropolis and it’s our responsibility to tell the world about them,” he said.

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The first international conference took place at site of Makli necropolis where national and international scholars and researchers such as Zain Mustafa, Professor Dr Rafique Mughal, Dr Muhammad Mehdi Tavassoli, Rand Eppich, Dr Zulfiqar Kalhoro, Rabela Junejo and Tania Ali Soomro presented their research papers.

While welcoming the scholars, researchers and participants, Culture, Heritage and Antiquities Minister Syed Sardar Shah said, “We are the proud descendants of the civilisation and cultures that shaped us to this day and made us the custodians of our ancient and living heritage.”

He said that Makli has remained his most romantic site since childhood

Referring to the people of Makli, he said they were the people who loved their death more than their lives.

Sardar said that the government’s efforts have been acknowledged and they have been successful in retaining Makli’s name on UNESCO’s World Heritage List during the World Heritage Committee’s 40th session in Istanbul.

“Everything in Sindh is a monument in itself, from the ruined brick squares of sinking Mohen Jo Daro to the checkered stone work mosaics of ceramics vibrating light to the subsiding melancholy of Thatta that no photograph, canvas or word can capture. You have to be here to feel it,” Endowment Fund Trust Secretary Hameed Akhund said.

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Explaining the history of the site, he said that the history of Thatta can be traced back to the second quarter of the 14th century.

He added that Thatta is mentioned in Tarikh-i-Firuz Shahi written in 1347 during Sultan Muhammad Tughlaq’s attack.

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