Realtor strikes pot filled with gold and silver in Pembarthy

Going by inscription, jewellery believed to belong to Kakatiya era (12-14th century A.D.)

There was a frisson of excitement in Pembarthy village of Jangaon after a real estate developer struck a pot filled with gold and silver ornaments in his 11-acre plot of land abutting the Warangal-Hyderabad NH-163. Images of the mud covered ornaments became viral with wild claims about the weight and provenance of the gold and silver ornaments.

“The pot was discovered in the night and the news came out in the morning. We took custody as per the Act at 1 p.m.,” said Jangaon Additional Collector A. Bhaskar Rao who took custody of the treasure under the Indian Treasure Trove Act-1878.

“The gold ornaments weighed 187.45 grams while the silver ornaments weighed 1.2 kilograms and they are being shifted to Treasury Office in Warangal,” the official said.

After the earthmover struck the pot tearing it up, word spread in the artisanal village which is known for brass and silver handicrafts. According to sources, Narasimha, the plot owner, said the gold belonged to God. Immediately after the discovery of the treasure, the villagers cracked open a coconut and lit joss sticks on the ground at a depth of about four feet.

“We learnt about the ornaments and jewellery and they appear to belong to Ammavaru (Goddess) as there are kalu kadiyalu (anklets), pustelu (necklace worn by married women) jhumkalu (ear-rings) and kireetam (crown),” said Ayla Rajesh of the Pembarthy who moulds similar jewellery. “They appear heavy unlike the modern ornaments which are like thin plates,” said Mr. Rajesh.

In the panchanama, officials’ inventory included 22 earrings weighing 77.220 grams, 51 gundlu weighing 57.800 grams, 11 pustelu weighing 17.800 grams, padigelu weighing 13 grams, and small gold sticks weighing 24 grams. They also found 1.227 kg of kadiyalu, five silver chains weighing 216 grams, 21 silver rings weighing 242 grams, and 37 silver pieces weighing 42 grams.

Apart from gold and silver, seven rubies (pagadalu) and a copper pot weighing 1.2 kg were also found. An inscription of a Kakatiya date was also found under the pond embankment, lending credence to the theory about the jewellery belonging to Kakatiya era (12-14th century A.D.)

The Treasure Trove Act provides a 100-year caveat to prove ownership of the treasure. Department of Heritage Telangana officials were closeted with district officials.

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