Artwork found in Akkampalli Caves depicts 7000 year old civilisation and culture.
These have been discovered in Akkampalli near Kurnool district’s Sanjamala, Andhra Pradesh state in India.
It is assumed to be contemporary to the existing rock sites at Ketavaram and Chintakunta near Kadapa district’s Muddanur.
Akkampalli Caves has total of five caves — three natural and two rock-cut — the etchings on whose walls throw a great deal of light on the life, culture, traits and beliefs of the era.
In one of the caves, near-life-size figures of crocodiles are prominently drawn in red ochre. The animal has been depicted with minute details such as nails, scales, legs and its strong jaw.
Given the dozens of images of crocodiles at the site, it is inferable that the area was infested with crocodiles although there are no water bodies there at present.
The site is known as ‘musalla gunda (boulder of crocodile)’. One of the caves has been converted into a Shiva shrine referred to as Nainalappa gudi or Vibhuthipandla guha.
Depictions of crocodiles have been found at other rock art sites in India, including the artwork shown in the featured image, which was discovered in the Bhanpura-Gandhi Sagar area of Madhya Pradesh. The crocodile measures 1.45 metres in length and is depicted in x-ray style, which also shows the internal organs of the crocodile.
Two other famous prehistoric rock art sites can be found within Andhra Pradesh, including Ketavaram, a site containing 100 human and animal figures drawn on basalt rocks, belonging to a period ranging from 6,000 BC to 200 AD; and Chintakunta, the second largest rock art site in India, which contains 200 paintings in ten shelters bearing red and white paintings of deer, bulls, elephants, foxes, rabbits, hyenas, reptiles, birds, geometric designs and human figures. The site in Akkampalli is thought to be contemporary to the existing rock sites at Ketavaram and Chintakunta.
Although these akkampalli caves have been discovered recently, this ancient treasure faced a serious vandalism threat, as many paintings have been disfigured by graffiti and inscriptions of visitors’ names.