Part 2 - Archaeological perspective: Caves may shed light on evolution theory

Manasi Saraf Joshi
Saturday, 21 July 2018

After the scientists world over officially declared this age as Meghalayan Age, Sakal Times in its concluding part of the series tries to understand the Geological and Archaeological changes that took place

Pune: After the Meghalayan caves were ratified by the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS), it has opened up new challenges and opportunity windows for geologists and archaeologists world over.

Read Part 1: Understanding the Meghalayan age

With the new theory making rounds that evolution has not taken only at one place, it is said that the Meghalayan caves will also shed light on the Evolution theory.

While talking to Sakal Times, Vice-Chancellor of Deccan College (Deemed University) Vasant Shinde said, “The stone age man could have occupied the space here, as we have discovered stone tools. But we need to explore deeper inside the caves. We need to find out the culture, the agricultural practices and other important aspects of the civilisations that would have resided here.”

“The fossils that have been found in Chinese Yunnan province indicates towards the theory of Evolution. Here, we need to study whether we will find anything related to it. We will be sending our students for further studies to this area and I hope the Meghalaya government, too, takes up further investigations here,” he said. 

Meanwhile, unlike the earlier theory of evolution that took place in Africa, there are different research groups and researchers who believe that evolution would have taken place in different parts of the world. Shinde said, “Independent origin roughly took place 20 lakh years ago. And we need to check whether the caves give any such clues here.”

He also said that like Bhimbetka they need to check the paintings, carvings inside the cave walls. “We believe that these caves would throw open a Pandora’s box for researchers as they are important ones,” he said.

The Meghalayan caves have largest deposits and some of the world’s longest caves, which are approximately 27 to 28 kilometres long. 

Geologists who have classified the last 4,200 years as being a distinct age in the story of our planet are calling it the Meghalayan Age, the onset of which was marked by a mega-drought that destroyed a number of civilisations worldwide.

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