Udhampur: Once famous as Multan city, Salmedi now boasts of a treasure trove of priceless artifacts. Located two kilometers away from Salmedi, Beli village has become witness to archaeological discoveries that support the existence of civilizations belonging to Harappa, Kushan, Maurya and Gupta period.

The archaeological remains unearthed here suggest that the village would have been a commercial centre in the past and weapons, utensils and pottery would have been part of business trade.

However, lack of adequate preservation has left these possessions to die a slow death. Although efforts have been initiated to preserve the ancient temple of Krimpchi- located 12 kms from the village, other places are still unnoticed.

There is an ancient brick temple located on the hilltop of Bely village, the entrance of which is facing the east. The architecture of the temple is believed to be belonging to the style of temples built during 8th or 9th centuries. However due to lack of preservation, the temple, which has so much archaeological value, is in ruins.

Idols of Ganesha and serpents have been discovered from a well near the temple.
According to Anil Paba, working on the history, culture and heritage, “Tirumchi temple is an old route between Kashmir and Kannauj.

Several earthen utensils, weapons and artifacts were uncovered during the visit to the area near the temple.”

He said that even as he has made several efforts to spread awareness about the archaeological importance of the Beli village, no step has been initiated by the archaeological department to protect the remains.

Parizada Mohd Ashraf, Deputy Director of department of archaeology archive and museum said, “Our team would soon be visiting the site.”

(JPN/Bureau)