The time is 1942. World War II is in full swing. In the Indian subcontinent also Skeleton Lake, the British are under constant threat of Japanese aggression. A forest ranger named Madhawal is out on a daily patrol in the Himalayan hills at an altitude of about 16,000 feet. Winter is over, snow is Skeleton Lake melting and roads are becoming more suitable for movement. So he is going with a very lively mind?
Roopkund Lake falls on the way to Madhawal. Its water freezes in the cold of the Himalayas for most of the year. The rest of the time the lake melts and the crystal clear crystal clear this lake with all its beauty. This beauty is not seen in Madhawal on the way. But today, for some unknown reason, his eyes fell on Roopkund. Immediately he got up with a thorn in his side. What can be seen under the water? Skeleton Lake No bones?
Madhawal immediately informed the elders. When all the snow melted, about a hundred skeletons were discovered at the bottom of the lake. Everything is human. When this news spread, the name of Roopkund became Skeleton Lake or Skeleton Lake.
Roopkund is a small lake in the Himalayas. It is located at an altitude of 16,500 feet above sea level. Geographically, Rupkund is located in the Indian state of Uttarakhand, just thirty-five miles north of the Tibetan border. Rupkund, only 130 feet wide and 10 feet deep, is located in an uninhabited area. The nearest settlement is called Wan. That too is a road of about five days. The area around Rupkund is notorious for storms. Pathghats, which are frozen for most of the year, are also a danger to tourists. As a result, it can be said that Anagona was not here for many years.
The beginning of the mystery
Where did these skeletons come from? Who are these unfortunate people? The British officials of the time could see the shadow of the Japanese in everything. So at first they thought it might be a Japanese army crossing the Himalayas to launch a surprise attack on British territory. However, it was soon realized that these skeletons have been lying here for at least a hundred years. Therefore, they cannot be any Japanese army.
After the partition of the country in 1956, the Anthropological Survey of India in Calcutta took the initiative to conduct the survey at Roopkund. There was a lot of interest in Indian scientists and knowledgeable people about Rupkund. Many have suggested that they may have dedicated themselves to a religious ritual. According to some, these were the remains of soldiers sent to invade Tibet by the Sultan of Delhi in the thirteenth century. Opposing this theory, another group claimed that they were not army members, but ordinary merchants who were going to Tibet.
Mythology of Roopkund
People living in the hilly areas have a story about Rupkund for generations. Nanda Devi is a sacred mountain peak in the Himalayan region. This thousand-year-old tradition takes pilgrims on perhaps the most dangerous path of any pilgrimage. Pilgrims cross the winding mountain roads, snow-covered roads, and storms to reach Homkunda, the closest place to Nanda Devi. At one stage of this long journey, they have to cross the mountain path to Roopkund. This narrow path goes up the hill, right along the lake. If you go a little side to side, you have to fall into the icy water of the lake.
According to local legends, Parvati once traveled to a distant kingdom. The goddess became angry when the king and queen mistreated her. Due to his curse, various calamities including drought and famine came down in the state. Ananyopaya Raja organized a pilgrimage to the goddess for redemption. But will the royal body, accustomed to luxury, find this journey difficult? The king therefore took with him all the arrangements of splendor. Dancers also have a place in the caravan for her entertainment.
The goddess became more angry when she saw the king’s kandakarkhana. He pushed the dancers down the narrow road to Roopkund and threw them into the abyss (turning them into stones).
Roopkund was unknown to the West for many years. In 1970, William Sachs, an anthropology student, was lucky enough to read some Indian books and learn about Roopkund. Curious, he came to One with a friend. A local guide showed them the road to the lake. It was very cold and stormy and Sax came to see Rupkund.
The story of Roopkund and Parvati thrilled Sax. In the eighties, Sax was the first person in the West to complete the pilgrimage to Nanda Devi. From that experience he wrote a book called Mountain Goddess in 1991. Europe America knows about the unsolved mystery of Skeleton Lake.
Tourist arrivals have been on the rise since Sax first visited Rupkund. Since there are no guards, many adventurous tourists try to move the skeletons lying in the water, displacing many bones. Some of them went ahead and took some bones with them. In 2004, Indian and Western scientists conducted large-scale experiments on the skeletons of Roopkund. As a result, their theory was that they probably died in storms and hailstorms.
By then carbon dating has become more modern. An expert named Tom Higham performed the test. His verdict was – all of these skeletons are from the ninth century, who died together in a few hours. As a result, he opined that one incident could be responsible for everyone’s death.
Combining all the results, this team of scientists came up with their theory. They said that a group of people were probably going to the shrine of Nanda Devi around 600 AD. The locals were helping them to cross the hilly path above Rupkund. At that time blizzard and hail started. Everyone in the caravan died. Then for a few years the avalanche dragged their bodies to the bottom of Rupkund.
But a new study made it even more concentrated. A year ago, scientists from India, the United States and Germany performed a genetic analysis of Roopkund’s skeletons. Among them were Dr. Niraj Rai of the Birbal-Sahni Institute in India and David Reich of Harvard. They tested the DNA of 36 skeletons and identified 23 as males and 15 as females.
Dr. Rye and David also see that 23 skeletons bear traces of South Asian descent. They died at various times between the seventh and tenth centuries. As a result, as mentioned earlier, everyone died within a few hours at the same time, the results of the DNA disagreed with him. One of them is from East Asia. Surprisingly the other group was from the eastern Mediterranean.
Asians who they may be pilgrims. But what were the people of the Mediterranean doing here? There is no evidence of a Mediterranean settlement with the Himalayan region at the time in question. So what were they doing here? How did so many people die? Why did their skeletons take place under the water of the icy lake?
Therefore, various scientific and unscientific theories are going on about Roopkund. Various companies are also doing business in this space, who will bring the skeletal lake to the safety of the interested tourists for a certain amount of money.