26 July, 2021

Here Lies The First Human... Perhaps

Cut marks on bone fossils found on an Indian foothill could well change the narrative on human evolution

Mount Genesis
The site in the Shivaliks where the fossils were found
Photo by Narendra Bisht
Here Lies The First Human... Perhaps
  • The Masol findings, if true, could complicate or deepen the out-of-Africa migration theory
  • It would make Masol in the Shivaliks, 20 km from Chandigarh, Asia’s oldest anthropological site
  • The Indo-French discovery could push back out-of-Africa migrations by about 5,00,000 years
  • Tells us more on how and when we started looking and behaving like homo sapiens rather than apes


Masol, an inconspicuous village tucked away in the lowe­r reaches of the Shivaliks in Punjab with a smattering of vegetation, has raised a question fundamental to our exi­stence: where and when did the first member of our species walk on this earth? Is it possible that ‘modern humans’ emerged first in Asia, or more precisely, what is present-day India, and not Africa, as is wid­ely believed across the world? And that, too, half-a-million years before the point where the evolutionary timeline is said to have ticked off going by the fossilised evidence in...

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