February 17, 2019 by admin
Archaeologists have begun digging for treasure beneath a 19th century fort in northern India, after a popular Hindu holy man said a former king appeared to him in a dream and told him of the cache.
The treasure hunt began after Hindu swami Shobhan Sarkar relayed his dream to an Indian government minister who was visiting the swami’s ashram last month.
The swami said the spirit of King Rao Ram Baksh Singh, who was hanged in 1858 after rising up against British colonial forces, told him to take care of the 1000-ton treasure worth almost $US50 billion ($A52.02 billion) hidden under the late king’s fort in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.
Indian geological and archaeological officials surveyed the area on Sunday and found evidence of heavy metal about 20 metres underground, District Magistrate Vijay Karan Anand said. Digging, which began on Friday, would the only way to confirm which type of metal.
The Archaeological Survey of India said it would begin digging under a temple contained within the ruins of the old fort.
A host of interested parties have already lined up to stake a claim to the treasure, believed to be in gold, silver and precious gems.
One of the king’s descendants, Navchandi Veer Pratap Singh, said: “If gold is really found there, we should get our share.”
Uttar Pradesh state authorities, as well as local officials, also said they had a right to the wealth.
“The treasure trove should be used for the development of the state,” local MP Kuldeep Senger said. Uttar Pradesh, with a staggering population of 200 million, is one of the poorest and least developed states in India.
Authorities have set up barricades against thousands of people who have since thronged to the village in hopes of seeing the treasure, or possibly taking a small piece home. People were offering prayers at the temple within the fort’s ruins.
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