Treasure-seeking teen trapped in tunnel

Islamabad -

Rescue workers were trying to save a teenage Pakistani boy trapped in a 15m tunnel he dug under his house to look for treasure, on the advice of a fortune-teller, police said on Monday.

Muhammad Zeeshan, 19, from the south-eastern city of Multan, had been digging the zigzag tunnel for more than a year when it caved in on him on Saturday night, police official Riaz Awan said.

A rescue agency official said the chances of saving him were very low. “It will be a miracle if we find him alive,” said Abdul Jabbar from Rescue 1122.

The boy began digging after the fortune-teller told him a Sikh family that had lived in the house prior to the partition of the Indian sub-continent had buried their treasure before migrating to India, Awan said.

Millions of families fled across the region amid violence during the partitioning into Muslim Pakistan and predominantly Hindu India, many leaving their belongings behind.

Many people buried their gold and other precious metals to avoid being robbed by mobs, hoping that they might return to recover them one day.

Awan said police had arrested the teen's parents and were looking for the fortune-teller. - Sapa-dpa