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Digging continues in UP, no signs of treasure yet


Security personnel stand guard at Safdarjung Hospital where the Unnao rape survivor died


Lucknow: Digging to unearth 1,000 tonnes of gold, said to be buried beneath a fort in Uttar Pradesh's Unnao district, continued for the third day Sunday amid heavy security but there was no indication of the treasure yet.

Unnao's Additional District Magistrate (Finance/Revenue) Shivendra Singh said the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) team, comprising 15 labourers and five supervisors, Sunday dug an additional 32 cm taking to 102 cm, the depth of the excavated area at the ruins of Raja Rao Ram Bux Singh's fort, near Daundia Kheda village, 70 km from Lucknow.

An ASI official said they had yet found no indications of the presence of the gold or any other metal, though remnants of a brick wall and other debris were found.

Earlier talking to a local TV channel here, ASI director Syed Jamal Hasan said they began excavation at the site in the neighbouring Unnao district after the Geological Survey of India (GSI), acting on a letter from the Prime Minister's Office (PMO), carried out a survey there.

Seer Shobhan Sarkar had a dream about presence of a huge quantity of gold and approached his devotee, union Minister of State for Agriculture Charan Das Mahant, and the PMO, following which the survey and excavation were undertaken.

Preliminary findings suggested presence of "some metal underneath the earth", following which ASI teams decided to proceed with the excavation, said Hasan.

A police official at the site told IANS that heavy security measures have been taken to maintain order in the area as it was apprehended that the crowd might turn violent in case no gold was found.

Unnao's Additional Superintendent of Police Sarvanand Singh said to maintain order and security, a company, a platoon and half a section of the Provincial Armed Constabulary, comprising 120 men, had been deployed at the excavation site and surrounding areas.

In addition, two deputy superintendents of police, 15 inspectors and 40 constables were also posted there.

He said the work was also being video-graphed, while CCTV cameras have also been installed.


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