The Nation


Gold Rush

Villagers hand over more than 1kg of gold sheets

Phatthalung villagers have returned over one kilogram of gold sheets and a bracelet that were recently discovered in a palm plantation in Khao Chai Son district and another batch of gold from four individuals would be returned to the Culture Ministry at City Hall tomorrow.

Following examination and assessment, the villagers would be paid a third of the gold's value by the middle this month, Anek Srihamat, director-general of the ministry's Fine Arts Department, said yesterday.

Gold and antique shops in Phatthalung and nearby provinces were urged not to buy these items. The gold, after study, would be sent to the National Museum in Nakhon Si Thammarat that has a better security system, but if in future Phatthalung were ready to build a museum to keep and display the gold, the department would be ready to support it.

The department called on villagers to "return" the ancient gold items by July 2 so officials could study their origin and preserve them as a national heritage.

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