A 10-feet-tall wooden structure, suspected to be a funeral chariot from Myanmar or Thailand, was found floating in the sea near Kanathur beach, much to the awe of local fishermen.

Around 5 p.m. on Monday, a fishing party led by Sekar (44), a resident of Reddy Kuppam in Kanathur, ventured into the sea, and found a huge golden structure bobbing on the waves.

“The men suspected it to be something valuable and called their colleagues on the shore to come to sea and help them pull the structure to the shore,” said a police officer.

The fishermen tied it to their fibre boats and pulled it ashore. Inside the structure, closely resembling a grand chariot, they found a bag containing five kg of rice, 20 packets of incense sticks and two water bottles that had labels in a script that looked like Burmese.

“It could be something used in funeral processions in some Asian countries. It has a row of bamboo sticks, on the bottom, that help to keep it afloat,” said the officer.

The chariot, painted golden, had an artistic roof featuring some inscriptions, and an elaborate platform decorated with colourful curtains. It attracted crowds to Kanathur shore right from the morning.

Some locals took away the incense packets and the rice before officials from the State fisheries department arrived to inspect the rare finding. However, the authorities returned after finding it ‘nothing precious,’ the police said.

The structure, now standing at Reddy Kuppam in Kanathur, is likely to be dismantled by locals soon, said the police.

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