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AP hopes to bring back famed Amaravati artifacts from UK


Hyderabad: The Andhra Pradesh government is hoping to bring back many artifacts related to its new capital city Amaravati, which are on display in the British Museum in London.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Secretary IYR Krishna Rao, who recently visited the museum, said about 30 to 40 artifacts that were excavated from and around Amaravati site are on the display at the British Museum.

“Lot of artifacts related to Amaravati are there. They are excavated from the site at Amaravati (in AP) and include stupa, pillar, relics and ‘chakras’. There (in the museum) is a separate gallery called Amaravati gallery comprising 30-40 artifacts, which are mainly related to Buddhism and Amaravati,” Rao told PTI here.

Amaravati, the new capital city of the state coming up in the Vijayawada-Guntur region, is named after the historic place in the present day Guntur district on the banks of river Krishna.

The state government has said Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone for the capital city at a grand event to be held on ‘Vijaya Dasami’ on October 22.

Amaravati, which means the town that lives forever, was the seat of power of Satavahana rulers and the name has been chosen in view of its historical, spiritual and mythological significance, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu had said.

The region had seen three religions – Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism – flourishing, according to historians.

The exquisite artifacts, believed to be made of local limestone called ‘Palnad’ marble, were shipped from India to London during the British Raj.

The Chief Secretary said the state government would like to take up the matter with the Union Government to bring back the famed artifacts.

“We are getting it video-graphed and getting it here. Then we would also like to take it up with Government of India and through it with Britain for sending them back. But, that’s going to be a long drawn out process. We will start out the process,” he said.

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