Interesting Stone age site at Gangavathi
Interesting stone age site
Gangavathi taluk in Koppala district of Karnataka State has hills by name Chikkabenakal betta(in Kannada language - betta means hill). A stone age period site is found in these hills. Distance is just 3km from the nearby village.
After climbing the hill, on entering the stone age village, one will be reminded of history books related to the stone age period. Vast area with Mesolithic or mid stone age period relics are found all over the place. The culture and civilization of the people who lived there could be guessed by having a look at the site.
The hills have huge rocks and boulders all over the place. At one corner, there is a small lake with water in it. Beside the lake, there are hundreds of huts with walls and flooring, all cut out of stones lying around and built using them.There is a round shaped passage cut for human entry into these huts. They do not have doors on any side. Pieces of stone lie all around these huts. There is no sign of any human beings living in the village.
People residing in the nearby villages of this hill call these ancient historical pieces as Morera plates, Morera huts or Morera tombs.
So far no attempts have been made to find out more about them. There are no proper roads that lead to this place.
Stone hut constuction
Most of the stone huts are of 2-8 feet height. The support for these huts are provided by the huge rectangular shaped stone walls. And the roof is just a huge circular stone plate covered over it. The name Morera plates is given just because of their resemblance to round shaped dinner plates. But until now no one knows why the name Morera has been given to these plates.
There is also a chance of people using this place as a burial ground at one time. And these constructions might be just tombs built in memory of their nearest and dearest people. The residents of nearby town, believe that this site may be of archaeological value.
A lecturer's comment
According to the history lecturer of Gangavathi University College, Mr. Sharanabasappa Kolkar, it is a stone age period site. And the nearby lakewith water stood as a proof for human beings dwelling on these hills, during that period.
The entrance with small curved passage cut in them shows only humans could enter into them.These small passages avoided wild animals from entering their homes directly.The shapes of these huts and the way in which they have been built shows thatthey are thousands of years old.
Protection to the stone age site
At one time, there were more than 600 stone huts in this area. But now they have been reduced to just 60-70. The reason behind this is the craziness of the treasurehunters who came there from time to time. Treasure hunters destroyed most of the huts, thinking there were chests of gold buried beneath them.
At this place, road construction is very much necessary to connect the hill with nearby villages. Tourists coming to see this site will have no problems to reach this spot if a road is constructed. Also protection is to be given by the State government, to this site so as to avoid further destruction of these historical remainings.