Forty Years Ago, July 16, 1978: Ajanta Discovery
One hundred sixty years after they were first discovered, the famed Ajanta caves are found to have a new series of exquisite wall paintings, retaining their original splendour and colours. The paintings were discovered in cave number six and 17 during the clean-up job by the chemists of the Archaeological Survey of India. They had hitherto been covered under layers of soot and dirt and had been unknown to the world. Constituted of a number of panels, the new series are yet to be studied and identified. They, however, depict the tales from the Jataka, the Buddhist folklore, like other paintings at the eighth-century caves.
Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan said the Rs 36 lakhs he received in India on his 80th birthday has been transferred to a “Pakhtoon trust” set up for charitable purposes, especially in Pakhtoonistan. In a letter to a friend from Kabul, he has also said he sold all his ancestral property in Pakistan, consisting of houses and a piece of land to raise funds for the trust. The Pakhtoon leader invited the friend to visit Kabul in August to participate in the celebrations of the Afghanistan independence. The friend, who likes to remain anonymous, was closely associated with the “Sarghadi Gandhi Salgira Samiti”, which had organised Badshah Khan’s four-month tour of India as part of Mahatma Gandhi’s centenary year celebrations programmes.
The Congress Working Committee might give the green signal to the Sharad Pawar faction to replace the present coalition of the two Congresses by a coalition with Janata Party or some smaller parties. That, broadly, seems to be the picture emerging out of hectic activity in the Congress camp. Chief Minister Vasantrao Patil, PCC chief Narendra Tidke as well as Pawar and his supporters are in Delhi to lobby their respective cases. All had discussions with the officiating Congress president, Y B Chavan.