After the Rs. 1 lakh crore treasure haul last week, the entire country is waiting with bated breath for the only other secret chamber of the Lord Padmanabhaswamy Temple, chamber B, to open and reveal its treasures.
The seven-member Supreme Court committee entrusted with the task of preparing an inventory of the treasures will meet on Friday to decide if at all the chamber is to be opened.
The 16th century temple, in the heart of the state capital, has six underground chambers — A, B, C, D, E and F.
Traditionally, the first two are secret chambers and have not been opened for the last 136 years. Chambers C and D are opened twice a year and E and F are opened daily.
After opening five chambers, the panel discovered a vast collection of gold, silver, precious stones and jewellery, estimated to be worth Rs. 1,00,000 crore. Out of this, treasure worth Rs. 50,000 crore is believed to have been found in chamber A alone.
Experts feel chamber B contains more wealth than all the other chambers put together. But temple officials have reportedly advised the panel against opening the chamber, citing ancient legends of a bad omen befalling the state as well as those involved in the exercise.
The chamber reportedly has a cobra motif on the main door, which according to experts is a warning that the chamber must not be opened.
Legend has it that in the early 20th century when famine gripped the state, some officials tried to break open the chambers. But they dropped the idea when they heard sounds of roaring waters.
Eventually it came to be believed that the subterranean vaults lead to the Arabian sea, which is just five km from the temple.
"Officials should not hinder age-old temple customs. We must not anger the presiding deity," said a 62-year-old local Lakshmikutty Amma.