New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday rejected to stay the process of excavation for gold at a fort in Uttar Pradesh.
The apex court gave the order after a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed that asked judges to monitor the exercise searching for 1,000 tonnes of buried gold after a seer reportedly said he dreamt of the treasures.
"The Supreme Court has refused to stay the gold digging process at the Unnao fort. The Supreme Court rejected a PIL that asked for the apex court's intervention in the digging," CNN-IBN reported.
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) on Friday started excavating the fort of former king Raja Ram Bux Singh in Duandia Khera village in Uttar Pradesh in hope of finding gold worth Rs 31,000 crore.
The operation was undertake by the government body on a mound near a Shiva temple in the village after Sadhu Shobhan Sarkar claimed that he had a dream in which the former king told him about a buried treasure.
The ASI plans to dig two 100-square-metre blocks beside the palace as District Magistrate Vijay Kiran Anand formally kicked off the excavation saying it would take at least a month to complete.
ASI Deputy Director PK Mishra, who is leading the team, said that the mound being excavated in the 19th century fort could yield items of historical value even if no gold is found.
The work began under intense scrutiny as authorities installed CCTV cameras, cordoned off the area and deployed police personnel to keep the crowd at bay during the excavation.
People from far away descended to the nondescript village to watch the spectacle even as the Supreme Court has agreed to hear a petition that asks judges to monitor the exercise searching for 1,000 tonnes of buried gold.