Now nobody said governance is always an exciting, colourful job. And it is perhaps only fair that government officials occasionally do something fun within their official capacities, for a change. For example order a treasure hunt based on someone's dream. Can you really blame them for giving in when the dream involves 'secret' bungalows hiding treasures left behind by kings?
Bangalore Mirror reports that days after a 29-year-old man from Tumakuru wrote to Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah's office detailing his dreams about two secret houses with wealth hidden in six rooms, the CM's principal secretary set the ball rolling on the treasure hunt. Well, almost. He wrote to the Commissioner of the Department of Archaeology, Museums and Heritage, asking him to check the veracity of these claims. Ostensibly, the only way to check the authenticity of these claims would be to go on a hunt for this alleged treasure.
And not just that, the man also wrote to the state's social welfare minister H Anjaneya, who in turn has tasked the director of Kannada and Culture department with a similar job.
Mirror reports that a man called Pradyumna Yadav wrote to the CM claiming he is the descendent of the Sri Kirisomeshwara kingdom, which was established 700 years ago. Parts of this vast kingdom, he claims, are Karnataka now. However, 300 years ago, apparently, the kingdom faced invasion from outsiders. It was then that a clever king hid all his wealth in six rooms.
He wants the government to dig up the hidden treasures and use it for development.
This isn't the first time governments have ordered treasure hunts based on dreams and 'divine visions'. In 2013, it was reported that a minister in the UPA government at the Centre spent Rs 1.6 million on an excavation of the area around a fort in Unnao district. Shobhan Sarkar, a self-proclaimed seer, had claimed that a king who died centuries ago had appeared in his dream to tell him about 1,000 tonnes of gold buried under a fort in Unnao. He wrote to several people, including the President and the Prime Minister in 2013, but no one paid attention to him. However he managed to pique the interest of an agriculture minister in the government who ordered the Geological Survey of India (GSI) to investigate. The GSI, BBC reports, took some soundings around the area which indicated that there was some metal buried there.
Excavations began, but after four weeks of digging and fighting over who gets the hypothetical gold, nothing was found. "The team stopped digging after four weeks of careful searching. The survey team found some rusty iron, toys and shards of broken glass," the BBC reported.
It is not clear where and how the hunt for the treasure in Karnataka will be organised, yet.