Islamabad: Over 2,700 antiquities of the
Gandhara era were on Sunday returned to the Buddhist Museum in the
Swat valley of northwest Pakistan, which was shutdown
following an attack by militants three years ago.
The Buddhist Museum in the valley was closed after a
bomb blast in February 2008 and its treasures were shifted to
a vault in the famed Taxila Museum for safety and security.
Officials of the Taxila Museum today handed over the
antiquities to their counterparts from the Department of
Archaeology of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province for the
rehabilitation of the Buddhist museum.
The team headed by Amanullah Khan, the Assistant
Curator of the Buddhist Museum, took custody of the
Khan said the collection includes 250 stone
sculptures, 100 statues of Buddha, 1,200 coins, 50 stucco
sculptures, pots, burial pottery and life stories of Buddha
from birth to death.
"The archaeological treasures of the Gandhara
civilisation were shifted to the Taxila Museum due to the law
and order situation in Khyber-Pukthunkhwa and threats from
militants," Khan added.
The Pakistani Taliban had set up a parallel
administration in most parts of Swat valley, located just 160
km from Islamabad, when the army launched an operation in 2009
to flush out the militants.
Peace has now been restored in most parts of the