Authorities have uncovered an astounding $22 billion worth of gold, jewelry, and gemstones inside of an ancient temple in southern India. The artifacts were found inside the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, a 16th Century shrine overseen by the Travancore Royal Family.
The riches are thought to be the accumulation of hundreds of years’ worth of contributions and donations from faithful Hindu followers. The treasures were found inside sealed vaults in the shrine after India’s Supreme Court forced an inspection of the grounds over allegations of lax security at the temple.
A fierce debate over what should be done with the treasure trove has been temporarily put to rest by the Indian Supreme Court. An interim ruling today stated that the items must be appraised, inventoried, and set aside to be put on display at a future museum.