Pakistan authorities Karachi, seized dozens of precious antiquities belonging to the 2,000-old Gandhara civilization, dug-up illegally from the country's terrorism-torn northwest. – Photos by AFP

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The Gandhara civilization’s remains are located in the Peshawar valley, and in some parts of Eastern Afghanistan. Texila was the main centre of the Gandhara civilization.

The civilization can be dated back to the 1st centaury BC. When the Buddha passed away, His relics were distributed to seven kings who built stupas over them for veneration.

The object of veneration was the stupa itself. Later, this symbol was replaced by a more sensitive human image.

The Gandhara schools are probably credited with the first representation of the Buddha in human form, the portrayal of Buddha in his human shape.

Buddhism left a rich and enormous legacy of art and architecture in Pakistan. Despite centuries of ideological changes and violence, the region preserved a lot of the heritage in craft and art. Much of this legacy is visible even today in Pakistan.

Comments (Closed)

Jul 08, 2012 09:16pm
Reminder for us for what happened to the civilizations of the past and all that remains are mere 'skeletons' of a society like the ones we see in these pictures. Reminds me that we are not here on this planet for ever. We better tread carefully on this earth for our moments are numbered.
Pankaj Patel (USA)
Jul 09, 2012 04:09pm
Manish you are right but in 1829 it was Raja Rammohan Roy who forced the British to abolish that practice.Let us be clear about the practice which started with the invasion of Muslims in India.When a Hindu ruler was defeated they use to take all women of the defeated army and forced them to marry to get respect or be as slaves.Under despair on seeing their army loosing women started committing what they called sati.These were all Rajput or warrior class women and not a single Brahmin or Bania woman.This practice was prevalent in north west and central India even during Moghul rule even if husband died of natural causes.Not a single woman died Sati in south India and East India or Nepal.Most women committed sati were unfortunately from what present day Pakistan is.There was no Hindu warrior class left at the time of partition so I presume that they have all become Muslim.
Jul 07, 2012 11:27am
These should be handed over to PK and be placed in Peshawar museum. There is must be a big boss behind the smugling
Shakil Ali
Jul 09, 2012 12:01pm
Pakistanis should be proud of their roots and being descendants from Indus Valley civilisations, one of the greatest civilisations that can be matched with that of Egypt. We are nwo muslims but that should not make us forget our origins.
Jul 10, 2012 10:22pm
Why do we have to always talk about Hindu and Muslim? These artifacts are important part of the history of human civilization and should be preserved for our future generations to learn about the past. BTW these do seem to be in excellent condition.
Jul 09, 2012 12:09am
Those who outcry any interference even if it is considered civilized, do not have a right to talk about perceived or real evils in other's religious and spiritual ways
Jul 09, 2012 11:56am
Heard of what is going on in Mali - destruction of an old civilisation, indeed sufism that is the soft face of Islam, and unacceptable to the fundamentalists. Intolerance is running riot in the hearts and minds of the fundamentalists.
Jul 09, 2012 11:07am
Yes,History is very important for every nation,but Migration and invasion also play an important role.If Spanish government find any things pertaining to Arabs it doesnt mean that who live in Spain their ancestor were Muslims or Arab.No one deny about Budha presence in Pakistan but its not pointing to pakistanies were buddhist. Any hindu knows about the history? When Aryan came to india they were not hindu.They defeated peoples live here and pushed them to deep in India.First they used to worship other things like agni etc.Who was Aryan, historian says different about them,some says they were european some says Aryans live in rawalpindi and sea was between Indian and Aryans,changes in sea allow aryans to enter India.Before any comment you should know about the all things if Pakistanies were Budhist then Question is that before budha what they were and before they were what they were
Jul 10, 2012 04:21pm
These civilizations are there to remind us that we all are accountable for what we do in this life and have to submit ourselves one day, leaving no remains behind.
Jul 11, 2012 10:49am
One civilization tide over the other . this keep happening . The clash of civilzations is the nature of human history . Lets preserve this for the future .
Jul 10, 2012 11:00am
When you become a Muslim, all else is immaterial.
Jul 08, 2012 12:08pm
woh what a logically explaination!!!!!!!! indus civiisation owes a lot to the spread of islam. alot of cultural religeous changes were made for instant satti was aboloshed by the Mughal empire.
Jul 08, 2012 02:10pm
well, sati was abolished by British in 1829 and not mughals.
Jul 08, 2012 04:38am
When islam spreads to those areas,their culture and civilisation vanished.Thats why pakistan does not have the feeling of indus civilisation where as india is proud of that.Actually Pakistanis are the real indians than current india.Because the indus vally civilisation was non muslims basically they were hindus called by persians thats why pakistani disclaims their roots with this civillization.If they are proud of indus vally civillization,then they should be proud of being called as indian .
Jul 09, 2012 07:19am
It is sad, Pakistan sits on invaluable history and relics of our forefathers. You should not compare your country to India or any other country but yourself. I think people in Pakistan need to develop respect for their roots and forefathers. If one cannot do that, then there cannot be any respect for them. Look at what talibans did to Buddha in Bamiyan, infact they were telling the world that they dont care what their forefathers and showed that they would not stop at destroying anything non muslim even if it is their fathers or mothers. This is sad, I dont think Islam teaches that.
Jul 09, 2012 08:18am
Wow! Is that what they taught you in school? You still have access to the internet, don't you? Please take out some time and learn about the true history of your land. Nobody should live in ignorance about the history of their culture and civilization.
Jul 09, 2012 08:45am
Ordinary Pakistani says - This is a foreign conspiracy - these artifacts cannot originate in the land of pure - we were always muslims - even before Arabs.
Jul 10, 2012 05:25am
Sati has no mention in Ancient Indian history, After Muslims started capturing women and dishonouring them increasing no.s in there Harems, This Social Evil Started.
Jul 10, 2012 05:29am
When You Leave Your Religion, Your Language, Your Customs and Your Values then How can be you proud of your past !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Egypt is now just another Arab Country except it has Pyramids and Sphnix. We are proud descendent of Indus Valey Culture as we still follow the customs, culture, religion and values.