A sage whose dream inspired archaeologists to dig for gold in Uttar Pradesh has had a new premonition, and claims an even bigger quantity of the precious metal is buried in the same state.
The seer, Shobhan Sarkar, originally dreamt that 1,000 tonnes of gold were buried at the ruined Unnao fort in Daundia Khera village. He now claims a further 2,500 tonnes are buried in an ancient temple at Adampur village, around 200km away in the district of Fatehpur.
The local administration has said that an official survey of the site will be carried out to investigate Sarkar's claims. However a representative was unenthusiastic when pressed on the matter.
"It is a tedious and scientific process, we don't have any experts. Even if an iota of this is true, we need experts to ascertain that," the district magistrate, Abhay Kumar, told reporters.
According to Sarkar's disciple and confidante, Swami Om, the treasure in Adampur is buried close to the crust and could be more easily excavated than the buried trove in Unnao.
The new claim has attracted vandals and illegal digging at the site with some treasure-hunters having already dug up nine different spots in search of the gold, according to the Hindustan Times.
Security personnel have been deployed to check the activities of the miscreants who left pits as deep as four feet near the Shiva temple, where most of the 2,500-ton gold is rumoured to be buried in Adampur.
"One can see the places were dug up deep in the night. Things are pretty scary," said Ram Chaturbuj, a villager.
"Stopping and questioning people in the night has become rampant. Unknown people emerge from nowhere and question about the fort's topography and sanctum sanctorum of the Shiv temple," Chaturbuj added.