the west bank of the Indus, 350 miles from Karachi lies Moenjodaro
(Mound of the Dead), an archaeological site which has been rated
amongst the most spectacular of the world's ancient cities.
Considered one of the earliest and most developed of urban civilizations,
Moenjodaro flourished from the third to the middle of the second
millennium B.C., when it vanished, leaving only traces of its
culture. Moenjodaro, along with Harappa - some 800 miles away
- formed part of the Indus valley civilizations and it is now
generally believed that these were the cities, referred to in
the Rigveda, that were destroyed by Aryan invaders.
urban planning at Moenjodaro was pragmatic and at a high level.
Its main thoroughfares were some 300 feet wide and were crossed
by straight streets that formed blocks 400 yards in length and
200/300 yards in width. The walls of the city's mud-brick and
baked-brick houses were designed to ensure the safety of its
occupants so that in times of earthquakes the structures collapsed
outwards. It had an elaborate covered drainage system, soak
pits for disposal bins, a state granary, a large and imposing
building that could have been a palace, and a citadel mound
with solid burnt-brick towers on its margin. Judging from the
remains, the Great Hall was probably the most striking of its
structures, comprising an open quadrangle with verandahs of
four sides, galleries and rooms at the back, a number of halls
and a large bathing pool perhaps used for religious or ceremonial