CUDDALORE: Revenue officials, acting on a tip-off, have thwarted a bid by some unidentified persons to smuggle by lorry centuries-old iron ore found in a reserve forest of a remote village near Vriddhachalam.
The lorry was found abandoned with the load, near the forest area and the officials could not trace anyone involved in the smuggling attempt.
But, villagers have said they have, of late, been seeing several lorries passing through, but did not know that iron ore was being smuggled.
It was learnt that the iron ore belonged to the 12th century AD during the time of king Kopperumsingam- I and that 800 years ago, an an iron factory had existed in Nadiapatttu village. This was revealed through research conducted by a team from the History Department of Annamalai University seven years ago.
Assistant professor of the History Department Sivaramakrishnan said, “We inspected the spot seven years back and found some iron-like material scattered on the ground. Following a test by the experts from the Earth Science Department, it was confirmed that the material contained 96 per cent iron.”
He further said, “An iron factory with 12 iron furnaces was functioning at this village during the period of king Kopperumsingam-I, with its capital at Senthamangalam.