Daily Mirror - Print Edition

Dutch-era skeletal remains found in electric pole digging

09 Dec 2023 - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}      

  • Discovery includes pottery fragments, porcelain pieces, and a smoking pipe

By Darshana Sanjeewa Balasuriya

A group of workers from the Ceylon Electricity Board, engaged in digging for an electricity pole installation in front of the Elections Secretariat office in the Matara Fort, recovered several skeletal remains believed to date back to the Dutch period.

Police said the CEB workers reported the discovery of potential human bones to the Department of Archaeology on Wednesday. Subsequently, an investigation was initiated, and the matter was brought to the attention of the Matara Magistrate’s Court.

The Magistrate examined the site and also the skeletal remains, which are now at the Matara Star Fort Museum, along with other recovered artefacts.

Police said several human skeletal fragments, porcelain pieces, a smoking pipe and various pottery fragments have been discovered at the excavation site.

The Magistrate has informed that these fragments should be kept in the museum and the archaeology officials have been ordered to carry out further excavations at the site where these bones were found.
Archaeological officials have asserted that these findings likely belong to the Dutch colonial period.
Matara Police are conducting further investigations.