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Oct 19, 2013 at 04:00pm IST

UP gold rush: GSI report indicated metal underneath Unnao fort

New Delhi: The Geological Survey of India (GSI) on October 3 and 4 conducted a preliminary investigation in Daundia Kheda village in Unnao district of Uttar Pradesh and found traces of metal under the soil.

According to the investigation, GSI found identical magnetic waves being formed in most parts of the area except for a 10 to 20 meters wide and 5 to 20 meters deep area. It was found that the magnetic field in this area was not uniform revealing the presence of gold, silver or some other alloy.

The GSI claims that the decision to excavate was taken after these findings of the 12-member team and not according to dreams of a Sadhu.

The GSI team was headed by SK Mishra, and included other superintending geologists Narendra Singh, Anil Kumar Singh, MK Rai, Sanjay Kumar Singh, senior geologist Alok Kumar and Shambhu Nath Dwivedi among others.

The Ministry of Culture also on Saturday clarified its stand on the ongoing excavation of gold in Unnao and said that the excavation is being carrying after ascertaining facts. A statement issued by the Ministry said that the excavation is being done after the Geological Survey of India's report and not because of a Sadhu's dream.

It had said in its statement that the GSI had reported of possible non-conducting metallic contents or alloys at 5-20 meters below the surface and suggested excavation.

"The Geological Survey of India had been asked to conduct an enquiry including GPRS (Ground Penetrating Radar Survey). On the basis of GSI report it was decided by ASI to undertake excavations at the site to try to unearth and determine the nature of the reported deposits. It is also noteworthy to mention that this is reported to be an ancient settlement site which may have the potential of being an important archaeological location," the statement said.

It also said, "This is reported to be an ancient settlement site which may have the potential of being an important archaeological location. The SA (Lucknow Circle) was conveyed permission on October 10, 2013 to undertake the trial exploration/excavations by deputing a full team from his office. Preparatory arrangements have been made by ASI Lucknow Circle, including preliminary survey of the area, establishing camp office, removal of vegetation, etc. The local administration has been informed about this and security arrangements have also been provided." The ministry added that the excavation will be completed in a time period of 2-3 weeks.

"The government has never claimed that 1,000 tonnes of gold will be found. We as archaeologists expect to find new things and civilizations. We connect the new findings to old ones and compare them. Our work is nothing but research," Dr Sayed Jamal Hasan, Director exploration, ASI said.

This has been a 'Peepli Live' moment in the village as media teams, thousands of curious onlookers and even a mini market has thronged to see the team of 12 archaeologists excavating the ruins of a fort.