Author Topic: Roopkund: Unsolved Mystery - रुपकुण्ड: एक अनसुलझा रहस्य  (Read 63002 times)

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रुपकुण्ड का एक दृश्य

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCUTWHCC9LE

पंकज सिंह महर

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Tucked in a remote corner of the Himalayas in India, is a frozen lake, Roopkund, at 16000 ft. In 1942 the accidental discovery of hundreds of skeletons here generated a controversy.

Skeleton Lake unravels the mystery behind the hundreds of skeletons strewn around the Roopkund Lake at a height of over 16,000 feet in the Garhwal Himalayas. The Roopkund riddle started in 1942, when a forest ranger accidentally unearthed a mass grave in Roopkund Lake. The mystery of Roopkund has intrigued sociologists, historians and anthropologists as well as local people for years. It has become the stuff of myth and legend. Fact and fiction have blended into religious folklore and been carried down the ages. With hundreds of skeletons strewn on the slopes of the Himalayas this colossal tragedy has shaken people worldwide.

The cause of this tragedy remains a mystery till now. Eventually, the riddle has been cracked. It started out as a regular excavation where the team retrievs several hundreds of bones and artifacts strewn on the slopes.

However, the most remarkable find came a bit later when the team discovers a body. It proves to be a rich source of DNA material. As the test results from different laboratories around the world start coming in, the various pieces of the jigsaw fall  into place.

Skeleton Lake reveals the secret behind the lake’s mass grave in Uttaranchal, based on the latest anthropological evidence.

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NGC, Miditech reveal secrets of 'Skeleton Lake'
 
Indiantelevision.com Team (28 October 2004 7:00 pm)
   
MUMBAI: Reading between the lines using forensic science! That is what National Geographic will do with its new series Forensic Investigation Report (FIR).

The show will air weekdays at 10 pm from 1 November. The show unravels mysteries behind mysterious deaths and crimes that have baffled people.
   
NGC senior V-P content and communication Dilshad Master says, "With this programme we are looking at strengthening our crime and mystery block. The pearl of the programme is the documentary film Skeleton Lake, which airs on 9 November. It was made by Miditech and seeks to unravel the secret behind the mass graves at Roopkund Lake in Uttaranchal.

"Skeleton Lake is a prime example of programmes on the channel that push the boundaries of what we understand about our world and at the same time provide credible, compelling programming to our viewers," he adds.
 
The riddle of Roopkund lake started in 1942 when a forest ranger unearthed a mass grave. Since then various theories have floated about as to why it happened. Miditech roped in German cultural anthropologist William Sax to help uncover the mystery. Sax led an expedition to the area and took
samples of skulls, flesh which were then examined in Indian and UK labs. Existing theories like the bodies belonged to an army were then discarded before the truth was arrived at.

NGC's investigation found that there were two ethnic groups involved. One group had people related to one another. There were several women and children. The film took a year and three months to make.

According to Miditech CEO Nikhil Alva who co-wrote the script with his brother Niret Alva, the biggest challenge was making a human story from a cold scientific investigation that viewers could relate to. "It was going to be a huge challenge to make the viewers care about something that happened in the 9th century AD. This was a personal project for me. In college in the mid 1980's while trekking I learnt about this site. Of course at that time there was little television."

He also said, "Then a couple of years ago we met National Geographic at Cannes and learnt that they were going to create a new strand of series. They were keen on doing something that involved India. We suggested this idea for them and they gave the go ahead. We roped in Professor sax as someone who narrates the story because we wanted someone that the global audience could identify with. Sax has a close connection with India and is therefore able to give a complete picture of what is going on."

Alva added that research was the hardest aspect of the project. It took 30-40 per cent of work allocated. "Facts are checked and cross checked by three different sources. That is because we are putting forth an argument here. It had to be backed up by scientific fact. What is interesting is that while we came up with a theory of where exactly the people were from the sample size was too small as per National Geographic's requirements.

"We had a sample size of 600-700. However the channel requires a sample size between 8,000-10,000. Therefore our theory of where the people were from was not included in the film. For the recreation footage we used hailstorms footage as well as actors.

"In December we will be giving another project to NGC which will be completely different. This will examine why a particular animal species is becoming extinct. That makes three projects from us this year after Leopards Of Bollywood and now Skeleton lake. Next year we will be adding another three. The genres are different and so is our approach. For instance the animal project will not have any recreation footage."

Meanwhile the first episode of FIR examines the Secret Of Einstein's Brain. A rediscovery is done about whether the nature of brain holds the key to the secret of genius. Another episode looks at the macabre Masscare At Putna Lobos. 700 years ago 200 people fishermen had their throats slit by the banks of a river. Their blood flows into the sand and sea
painting the coastline dark red. Was this a ritual
sacrifice or a mass slaughter meant to fulfill another purpose?

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रुपकुंड पर भारतीय डाक विभाग ने 6 नवम्बर, 2006 को शीर्षक-A commemorative postage stamp on  'Himalayan Lakes' से एक डाक टिकट भी जारी किया है।


KUNAL

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My roopkund video
« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2009, 06:30:26 PM »
मेरे द्वारा तैयार किये गये रुपकुण्ड के वीडियोज़ को आप निम्न लिंक पर देख सकते हैं।

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=trek+to+roopkund&search_type=&aq=f

पंकज सिंह महर

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रुपकुण्ड के नर कंकालों की जांच सर्वप्रथम लखनऊ विश्वविद्यालय के प्रो० जी०एस० मजमूदार ने की और जांच रिपोर्ट को  "रहस्यमय रुपकुण्ड" नाम से प्रकाशित किया।
वर्तमान समय में इन कंकालों पर राष्ट्रीय और अंतर्राष्ट्रीय स्तर पर वैज्ञानिकों द्वारा अध्ययन किया जा रहा है। रेडियो कार्बन तिथि के आधार पर इनका समय ९ वीं शताब्दी के लगभग निर्धारित हुई है।

पंकज सिंह महर

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When ice melts in the glacial tarn of Roopkund, located 5,000 metres above sea level in Chamoli district, Uttaranchal, hundreds of corpses can be seen floating. Thus gets exposed a mystery that dates back to more than 60 years and has begun to be understood only recently.


In 1942, a forest guard chanced upon hundreds of skeletons at this tarn. The remains have intrigued anthropologists, scientists, historians and the local people ever since. Who were these people? What were they doing in the inhospitable regions of the Garhwal Himalaya? Many speculated, initially, that the remains were those of Japanese soldiers who had sneaked into the area, and had then perished to the ravages of the inhospitable terrain.

Those were World War II times and even the slightest mention of a Japanese invasion was bound to throw the area’s British administrators into the tizzy.

The matter was investigated and the speculation was put to rest: the corpses were said to date back to at least a century. But nobody knew when exactly. Some British explorers to Roopkund, and many scholars attribute the bones to General Zorawar Singh of Kashmir, and his men, who are said to have lost their way and perished in the high Himalayas, on their return journey after the Battle of Tibet in 1841.

But radio-carbon tests on the corpses in the 1960s belied this theory. The tests vaguely indicated that the skeletons could date back to anytime between the 12th and 15th centuries ad. This led many historians to link the corpses to an unsuccessful attack by Mohammad Tughlak on the Garhwal Himalaya. Still others believed that the remains were of those of victims of an unknown epidemic. Some anthropologists also put forward a theory of ritual suicide.

Local folklore has it that in medieval times, king Jasdhawal of Kanauj wanted to celebrate the birth of an heir by undertaking a pilgrimage to the Nanda-Devi mountains in the Garhwal Himalaya. However, he disregarded the rules of pilgrimage by boisterous singing and dancing. The entourage earned the wrath of the local deity, Latu. They were caught in a terrible hailstorm and were thrown into the Roopkund lake.




Folklore is not all myth


Now the first forensic investigation of the frozen corpses has concurred with the hailstorm theory. Scientists commissioned by the National Geographic television channel to examine the corpses believe that they died from sharp blows to their skulls. “We retrieved a number of skulls which showed short, deep cracks,” said Subhash Walimbe, a physical anthropologist at the Deccan college, Pune. Walimbe was a member of the team that visited the site.

“The cracks were caused not by a landslide or an avalanche but by blunt, round objects about the size of cricket balls,” he surmised. According to Walimbe, “The only plausible explanation for so many people sustaining such similar injuries at the same time is something that fell from the sky. The injuries were all to the top of the skull and not to other bones in the body, so they must have come from above. Our view is that death was caused by extremely large hailstones”. Another member of the team, Wolfgang Sax, an anthropologist at Heidelberg University in Germany, cited a traditional song among Himalayan women that describes a goddess so enraged at outsiders who defiled her mountain sanctuary that she rained death upon them by flinging hailstones “hard as iron”.

“We were amazed by what we found,” said Pramod Joglekar, a bio-archaeologist at Deccan College, Pune. “In addition to skeletons, we discovered bodies with the flesh intact, perfectly preserved in the icy ground. We could see their hair and nails as well as pieces of clothing,” he said. The scientists found glass bangles, indicating the presence of women.

The team also found a ring, spear, leather shoes and bamboo staves. This has led them to hypothesize that the corpses were those of pilgrims. The scientists estimate that as many as 600 bodies may still be buried in snow and ice by the lake.




Pilgrims perish




The samples were sent to the Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit of Oxford University, uk where the date of death was established at about 850 ad. The team has yet to resolve the identity of the victims, though.

Meanwhile, scientists at the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad have also undertaken tests on skeletal remains. Lalji Singh, the director of the centre, said that his institute had conducted studies on the dna of 31 samples of bone and muscle taken out from the remains. “Three samples have unique mutations in the mitochondrial dna which are not found anywhere in the world but only in a particular group of people from Maharashtra,” he said. Singh, however, refused to mention the ethnic group. He said analysis of two other samples matched with some people living in Garhwal even as further studies on all the 31 samples were still on to find out more accurate facts. D K Bhattacharya of the National Geographic team agrees: “Only a few have the characteristics of the Mongoloid hill people of the Himalaya,” noted this scholar from the University of Delhi. It’s quite possible that the pilgrims employed these local people as porters. After all, Roopkund is almost 35 km away from the nearest human settlement and it’s virtually impossible for outsiders to venture into the area without taking the help of local people.

Need protection


It is quite unfortunate that the local administration has made no organised attempt to protect this site. Skeletal remains and other articles of those who perished ages back are reported to have been diminishing fast from here. Lack of administrative will and a general indifference has denied this destination its due place on the international tourist map. In the ceaseless efforts to win over nature sometime we emerge as victorious though losing the battle is also an integral part of the game. The Roopkund reamins an indicator of the latter.


source- www.roopkund.com

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The Roopkund riddle, dating back to the 9th century AD, might have perplexed scientists, historians and mountaineers from around the world for many years but not the young and determined members of the IBN7 team comprising of Correspondent Nitish Kumar, Cameraman Naseem Anwar Khan and Gopal Dutt Sharma.


With their undaunted spirits to unravel the mystery behind mysterious skeleton lake, the team trekked to the remote region of Roopkund - the mysterious lake located at the height of 5,029 ms from the sea level.


here the news

IBN 7 the first news channel to reach Roopkund
 
 
MUMBAI: The Roopkund riddle, dating back to the 9th century AD, has perplexed scientists, historians and mountaineers from around the world for many years. In an attempt to unravel and understand the enigma that is this lake, the IBN 7 team trekked to the remote region of Roopkund in Uttranchal.

In a special series titled ‘Roopkund, the channel attempted to bring forth to its viewers a reality, which is still shrouded in mystery. The show entailed interviews of natives and the elaborate rituals and customs including the one the team was requested to undertake to ensure the safe and successful completion of their mission. The treacherous terrain involved the team completing their journey to Roopkund on horseback. The two-day special captured not only the story behind the lake.

With this feature IBN 7 became the first news channel to reach Roopkund.

“Roopkund was an endeavor undertaken by the IBN 7 team to bring to light the mystery behind the lake. I am confident that the feature appealed to the masses by virtue of being a topic of common interest in conjunction with IBN 7’s credible reportage” said Ashutosh, Managing Editor, IBN 7.

Roopkund is popularly known as the Mystery Lake because of the mystery surrounding the findings of the human skeletons. The magnificent lake Roopkund is below the Trishul peak and is surrounded by rock-strewn glaciers and snow clad peaks of Uttaranchal.

Situated at an altitude of 5029 mts. in the interior of the Chamoli district, Roopkund is famous for the mysterious shallow lake of about 2 mts., with the edges covered with snow almost throughout the year. After the snow melts, skeletal remains which are believed to be over 500-600 years old.
 

 

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