Village goes on gold hunt, finds bride‘s lost jewellery

MADIKERI: With three days to go for Kusuma‘s wedding, the entire village of Hattihole in Karnataka was on a major mission on Thursday – digging through the earth piled by landslides for the bride‘s gold. Umesh Shetty, 64, had saved up cash and recently bought jewellery for his daughter‘s wedding. The landslides took his iron safe and with it, the ornaments the bride was to wear. Late evening, the desperate seekers struck gold, literally.
All day, the villagers dug around the area where Shetty‘s house once stood, looking for the safe. Since vehicles could not reach the spot, locals used anything they found handy to dig up the mud. They kept digging despite the fear of more landslides.

Shetty‘s house was destroyed in a landslide on August 16. A coffee plantation labour-er, he had arranged for his daughter, Kusuma, to be married on August 26. He was distraught that his daughter would have to be married without the jewellery.

The bridegroom, Dhananjaya, assured the family that the wedding would be held on the same date as planned and that the missing gold ornaments wouldn‘t make a difference. But Shetty was insistent that the gold be found. So was his wife, Suguna.

Shetty had quickly moved his family to a relative‘s house in Garagundur village after they heard about landslides and floods in the area. “They walked for several kilometres in the night,” a relative said. “It was a crisis and they did not have time to take any of their belongings. They left with nothing.”

The digging proceeded slowly. Around evening, help came from an unexpected quarter. “Local MLA Appachchu Ranjan sent a JCB to the spot. The JCB came through a temporary road that was built. In the evening, the JCB lifted the safe,” a jubilant Shetty said. “The gold ornaments were intact but the cash is still missing,” he added.

Get latest news & live updates on the go on your pc with . Download The for your device. in English and other languages.