What is the story behind the Chithirai festival?  Every year in April-May, tens of thousands of people visit Madurai to take part in the
The Great Trigonometrical Survey of India was the largest measurement of the Earth’s surface ever attempted. Apart from mapping the country, the project measured
Different communities across the world celebrate their New Year’s Day on different days of the year, based on the calendars they follow. The Parsis
A lot of what we know of Mughal history has been pieced together from royal chronicles – and travellers’ accounts. Niccolao Manucci was an

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Latest Videos

Burial sites are among the most important sources of information for archaeologists. The excavations at Keeladi, Adichanallur, Korkai and other places in Tamil Nadu have thrown up a host of burial urns, skeletal remains and other grave goods. These finds reveal much about the oldest settlements in south India through the ways in which they dealt with death. This video, the latest in our series around the Keeladi excavations, explores the different burial rites and practices of ancient Tamils and how they help us understand our history and cultures of the past better.

How old are the oldest settlements in south India? This video explores the story of the recent excavations at Keeladi, which revealed the existence of a sophisticated Tamil civilisation dating back at least to the 6th century BCE. But did you know that archaeological digs carried out over a 100 years earlier at sites like Adichanallur and Pallavaram had already hinted at human habitation sites in Tamil Nadu dating back thousands of years? How have these path-breaking excavations changed our understanding of ancient south Indian history?

What can a few fragments of pottery tell us about how people wrote 5000 years ago? Quite a lot, as it turns out. The Keeladi excavations of 2015 pointed to the existence of a literate ancient Tamil civilisation that could go as far back as 800 BCE. Among the most significant finds was a series of potshards with different inscriptions, which offered many fascinating insights about the evolution of scripts in India.

Which are the oldest languages and scripts in India? Is there a mother of all scripts, in a land that is as diverse and variegated as India? What similarities or differences exist between the south Indian scripts, and do they have anything in common with the ones used in north India? The first of this two-part video story explores these fascinating questions and more as it traces the evolution of Indian scripts over the last 2500 years.

Picture Stories


In human civilisation, languages evolved first, and then came scripts. The Devanagari script is one of the oldest scripts of India, having evolved from the ancient Brahmi script. It

Bheema Pul

This rock formation, known as the Bheema Pul (‘Bheema’s Bridge’), is near Badrinath in Uttarakhand. And yes, it is named after a story around Bheema from the Mahabharata. Towards


The Golghar (meaning ‘circular building’) in Patna, Bihar is a gigantic igloo-like granary that was built several years after the Bengal famine of 1770. Millions died in this disastrous

Open Hand Monument

The Partition of India in 1947 into two separate nations – India and Pakistan – was a violent and bitter event. Punjab was one of the regions that was

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