Lucknow: The first day of excavations to unearth a purported 1,000 tonnes of gold at the Daundia Kheda village in Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao district ended at sunset yesterday, an official said. The village is 70km from the state capital Lucknow.
The gold is said to be hidden under the fort of Raja Rao Ram Bux Singh. On the first day, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) restricted digging to the peripheral area.
The work started amidst chanting of hymns after which the district magistrate and the district police chief began the symbolic digging. The boundaries of the area to be dug up have been marked and wooden nails and coloured poles have been erected.
“Points” would be dug at every two metres of the marked area, informed ASI circle in-charge Pravin Kumar. ASI officials have been camping at the site for the past three days. As thousands turned up for a sight of the fort as news of seer Shobhan Sarkar’s gold dream spread, the district administration has now banned entry of people into the fort’s court.
Sarkar wrote to the prime minister a few weeks back narrating the king had come in his dreams and asked him to get the treasure dug up and hand it over to the government of India to tide the economic crisis.
His devotee, Congress leader Bhakt Charan Das visited the saint and then urged the ASI to take up the issue.
Preliminary findings, officials say, suggest presence of “some metal underneath the earth”, following which ASI teams decided to proceed with the excavation. Experts, however, are not too sure about the possibility of gold buried underneath.
Unnao is 50km from the state capital.