Tilla Tapa, which means“Golden Hill,” is an archaeological site in the northern province of Jawzjan that is thousands of years old, has been left abandoned by the government and is becoming a ruin, say Jawzjan residents.
Tilla Tapa, which is located near the provincial capital, Sheberghan, consists of burial mounds and was excavated in 1978, and dated between the 1st century BCE-1st century CE.
A large collection of gold and jewels--known as the "Bactrian gold," was discovered at the burial site. Over 20,000 pieces from the site went missing but were found and reclaimed in 2003.
There were six burial mounds originally discovered, but there might be a seventh as well, according to Azimullah Rahmanyar, head of Jawzjan's Directorate of Information and Culture, but it was left abandoned due to the war and was illegally excavated.
“At least it should be surrounded by walls so that it is maintained as a historical site, and within the area, there should be two rooms as a museum to display the discovered relics of Tilla Tapa,” said Rahmanyar.
Jawzjan has 43 historical sites, according to local officials. The roads that connect to the area are hard to pass.
“One of the thousands of relics found here is the golden sheep, whose price, so far, no one has been able to estimate,” said Karamatullah Azizi, head of the tourism department of Jawzjan's Directorate of Information and Culture.
Jawzjan residents called for the protection of historical sites in the northern province.
“Historical sites should be protected so that we can attract the attention of tourists to the country and so that we maintain our culture,” said Jan Mohammad Habibi, a Jawzjan resident.
“We should keep our culture alive and also it will help the government to benefit from it,” said Taimoor, a Jawzjan resident.