LAHORE: The first evidence of Christians living in Skardu has been found on the highest mountain of Kavardo village in Baltistan, Gilgit-Baltistan.According to a press release issued Sunday, a...
LAHORE: The first evidence of Christians living in Skardu has been found on the highest mountain of Kavardo village in Baltistan, Gilgit-Baltistan.
According to a press release issued Sunday, a three-member expedition team from the University of Baltistan, Skardu (UOBS) has discovered a huge marble cross, weighing more than 3-4 tons (approximately 7x6 feet in size), high up in the mountain ranges of Kavardo village.
The UOBS Research & Expedition team under the leadership of Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Naeem Khan and comprising director Academics Dr Zakir Hussain Zakir and director External Linkages Dr Ishtiaq Hussain Maqpoon visited the mountain site to study the strange ancient cross, in company of some local villagers and mountain guides.
According to the university researchers’ team, the cross is perhaps 900-1000 years ago, which marks the decline of Buddhism. The researchers claim that it might be the discovery of the missing link between the decline of Buddhism and emergence of Islam in this historic region of Himalayan & Karakoram valleys.
While the village is 1500 years old, the researchers further presume that the rock was also from the middle ages, its carving was like that of the Buddhist traditions which explained that the people designing this might be converts.
A significant feature of this rock that made it a matter of attention was that the cross shape was not of equal sides like that of a normal ‘plus’ rather the lower side was longer which confirmed that it intended to depict the ‘Christian Cross’.
The director academic, Zakir Hussain Zakir, is of an opinion that this discovery of the cross indicates the presence of European or Roman history in these valleys.
Meanwhile, according to Wajid Bhatti, a PhD scholar at Quaid-e-Azam University (QAU) Nestorian settlements had also been found in these areas where early Christians of Parthian dynasty used to worship this cross.
He further called the Kavardo cross ‘a typical Thomanian Cross of India’ and was astonished by the size of it. He also said this was one of the biggest cross of Christianity found in India so far.
Vice Chancellor University of Baltistan, Dr Muhammad Naeem Khan while naming it as ‘Kavardo Cross’ said the university would reach out to the European and North American universities and also develop academic linkages with local historians to find out the exact date of the cross carving from a rock boulder and scientifically describe the details of this rock.