A group of 50 labourers digging a drain in the Alakabad village in the district, under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS), came across the silver coins Tuesday, district chief development officer (CDO) Padam Singh said over telephone.
He said the labourers did not reveal their find and distributed the coins among themselves. However, some of the labourers, who were not satisfied with their share, told the authorities about the coins, Singh said, adding that the coins were then seized from the labourers and deposited in the treasury.
The area from where the coins were recovered has been cordoned-off. “No one is being allowed to enter the area,” Singh said.
He said the coins appear to date back to 13th century as they bear Arabic inscriptions and are dated equivalent to the period 1218-1229.
A team of the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) officials from Lucknow has been called to study the coins.
“The ASI officials are expected to arrive tomorrow (Friday) and will also visit the area for their study,” Singh said.
Bareilly is some 250 km from Lucknow.