Islamabad - The Department of Archaeology and Museums (DoAM) has added 1000 artefacts – recovered by Customs Staff of the Islamabad Airport – to the Islamabad Museum.

“These artefacts belonging to Buddhist, Greek and Mughal period were recovered by the Customs officials and handed over to the relevant department of DoAM after fulfilling all legal requirements and now the number of recovered artefacts in Islamabad has reached up to 12,000,” said Director (Archaeology) DoAM, Abdul Azeem.

Talking to APP on Thursday, Abdul Azeem said that customs officials have saved these artefacts from smuggling to different countries including Italy, Thailand, Germany and Japan and these included stone made sculptures, clay utensils, coins and other items.

He said that the bowl is open-mouthed of 16.5 cm diameter and 5.7 cm depth with a flat base interior. The bowl is decorated with embossed figures of winged lions and acanthus leaves alternatively.

The bowl has a bearded human head with long curly hair in its centre and head rests on four round shaped objects.

He said it seems that the human shape carved on the bowl is of Dionysus, king of wine in ancient Greek mythology while wine bottles, leaves of grapes and lion are carved on the bowl also represents its connection with King Dionysus.

He said the same bowl was earlier found during the construction of Serena Hotel more than three decades ago and housed in Taxila Museum.

About another unique ram-figure object, he said the length of the rammed object with curved horns and diagonally cut ears is 7.00 cm in length and 4.00 cm in height. The body of the ram is hollow inside while legs are of solid gold.

Abdul Azeem said the function of DoAM was limited to the federal capital after 18th Amendment of the Constitution and 12,000 artefacts in our department’ possessions were recovered at Islamabad Airport.

He said the artefacts recovered are handed over to DoAM after following a legal procedure with the involvement of Law enforcement agencies, customs officials, Anti Narcotics Force and other relevant departments.

Abdul Azeem said these artefacts will be displayed in our upcoming week-long exhibition on National Heritage of Pakistan which will be attended by archaeologists, researchers, students and policymakers.  The exhibition is likely to be held at the end of November or start of December as a part of ongoing 70th Independence Day celebrations.

Colombian festival in full

swing at PNCA

The week-long Columbian festival was in full swing here at the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) with an exhibition of photographs, and the screening Colombia super hit films.

More than two dozens of exquisite photographs by Nicolas Van Hemelryck, an adventurist and environmental photographer who turned to be a thrilling filmmaker lately, were put on display.

The exhibits reflect the amazing flora and fauna of the world’s largest rainforests that are spread over 5.5 million Km2 covering much of north-western Brazil and extending into Colombia, Peru and other South American countries.

Amazon is the world’s largest tropical rainforest, famed for its biodiversity. It’s crisscrossed by thousands of rivers, including the powerful Amazon. River towns, with 19th-century architecture from rubber-boom days, include Brazil’s Manaus and Belém and Peru’s Iquitos and Puerto Maldonado. Deforestation in the Amazon rainforest has been declining since 2004, mostly due to the falling deforestation rate in Brazil. There are a variety of reasons for the decline, including macroeconomic trends, new protected areas and indigenous territories, improved law enforcement, deforestation monitoring via satellite, pressure from environmental groups, and private sector initiatives.

The documentary includes archival footage, interviews and live footage of author, his family and friends.

The novel “One Hundred Years of Solitude” by Marquez remains at the centre of the documentary.


 The novel became a classic worldwide. The author’s friendship with Cuba’s legendary Fidel Castro became exemplary and helped many Cuban writers who had been imprisoned.

All this and more is seen in the documentary. The film covers author’s life from childhood to his demise. Interviews of renowned people including President Bill Clinton are the highlights. Gabo is the picture of a man with several dimensions with remarkable feats and achievements but above all a man of reality. The film runs for 90 minutes. Columbian Ambassador Juan Alfredo Pinto Saavedra said that his country has several socio-cultural similarities as of Pakistan. There is a lot common in the two countries that can be shared with the people of each other. He said his country is mostly known for the Amazon forest and Gabo. There could be no other special attraction to begin the Columbian festival with. Syed Jamal Shah, the PNCA Director General, said the first-ever Columbian festival would pave a path for long-term cultural interaction and exchange between the two countries. He said the Amazon forest and the Nobel prize-winning Gabriel García Márque certainly are the great honour for Columbia and the global identity. There is a lot to learn from each other’s culture and heritage, he said.