The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) plans to initiate digging at a new site near the river Ganga while expanding excavation at the current site in Unnao’s Daundia Khera village.

The team of ASI officials has not found anything significant at the present digging site, where 1,000 tonnes of gold is believed to be buried. After consultation with the ASI officials at the site, the Geological Survey of India team has suggested another area at the site close to river Ganga for trial excavation. The ASI has dug up to 4.8 metres (around 16 feet) below the surface in the existing site and reached a level of Kankar formation, which started from 4.6 metres.

The ASI initiated the digging at the dilapidated fort of Raja Ram Baksh Singh in the Buxar area of Unnao after Shobhan Sarkar, head priest of the Shobhan Temple, claimed to have dreamt of 1,000 tonnes of gold lying buried under the ruins of the fort. Sarkar has claimed that the king appeared in his dream and told him about the treasure. The priest had claimed that gold would be found after 15 feet of digging but ASI officials have had no luck so far.

The priest had said that the digging must be completed before Dhanteras (the first day of Diwali festival) or else the gold will turn into ash.

Sub Divisional Magistrate of Bara, Unnao, Vijay Shankar Dubey dismissed media reports that suggested the digging had been called off as the ASI failed to find gold. “The digging is on. There is no trace of gold as of yet,” he confirmed.

The ASI would also extend the area of digging in the same trench, after removing the structure of the brick wall. So far the ASI has found glass bangles, iron nails, a fragmentary miniature stone figure of a lion, among other things in the trench.