Officials of the Archaeological Survey of India said that they have found ancient caves and temples, remains of Buddhist structures and mural inscriptions bearing names of cities like Mathura and Kaushambi in old scripts during its recent exploration at Bandhavgarh in Madhya Pradesh. The ASI published the photos on its social media profiles.
According to the officials, an ASI team covered nearly 170 sq km falling in the area of the famous Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve that is not accessible to the public during the over a month-long exploration of the region, which it undertook for the first since 1938.
During the exercise held from May 20-June 27, the ASI's Jabalpur Circle also reported many ancient sculptures, including large monolithic sculptures of various avatars of Vishnu like 'Varaha' and 'Matsya', and "board games made in natural caves", officials said.
While talking to the media, an official said, "For me, the most startling finding is the remains of the Buddhist structures in the region where a Hindu dynasty ruled. It suggests religious harmony, but who built these Buddhist structures is not known yet."
A votive stupa and a Buddhist pillar fragment containing miniature stups carving, which roughly dates back to the 2nd-3rd century AD, have been documented as part of this exploration, according to information shared by the ASI on social media.