Rajahmundry: Archaeologists find gold mine in coins offered to Lord

Rajahmundry: Archaeology authorities have assessed the antique value of nearly 28 tonnes of foreign coins mainly from Malaysia and UAE and have found over 1,200 coins having such value during the recent verification carried out at the temple of lord Venkateswara of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams in Chittoor district in AP.

A team of nine officials from the department of archaeology and museums led by its commissioner Dr G. Vani Mohan carried out the verification and assessment of foreign coins from May 6 to 18 at TTD and came up with several findings. They found a huge quantum of foreign coins out of the 28 tonnes to be from Malaysia and identified them to be of denominations of 50, 20, 10 and five sen. These coins are made of steel, copper, silver and gold-coloured metal of varied sizes. Some coins belonged to the United Arab Emirates.

The archaeology authorities noticed some coins having emblems of British Queen Elizabeth, Victoria while some were having George V, George VI, Edward VII (gold coin) and some silver coins have emblems of Nizam-ul-Mulk and the famous Charminar of Hyderabad.

As the foreign coins have the date of issue embossed on them, the authorities have identified those coins as being dated nearly 75 years back and have been declared as having antique value.  The authorities have recommended to the TTD authorities to preserve and display them in their museum for the benefit of the general public.

TTD sources say that the foreign coins which were offered by the foreign devotees to the lord Venkateswara during their visit to the temple in the last 10 years were subjected to verification and assessment with an intention to preserve those having  antique value and to dispose the remaining ones as per norms. The foreign coins from Malaysia are likely to be sent there after working out the modalities and the equivalent amount may be secured by the TTD from it to compensate for returning the coins.

A senior official from the archaeology department said, “The verification of nearly 28 tonnes of foreign coins to identity coins of antique value was carried out and over 1,200 such coins were found. We have recommended to the TTD to preserve coins having antique value.”


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