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First Look: Diamonds on Juhu beach

Vijay Singh in Mumbai | June 27, 2005

A mad hunt for diamonds on Juhu beach in suburban Mumbai claimed two lives on Monday.

This reporter saw a boy who had ventured deep into the sea looking for diamonds, gobbled up by monstrous waves.

One of a few brave ones on the beach, who tried to form a human chain and rescue the boy, also drowned.

The hunt for diamonds, that had assumed manic proportions by Monday, began on Friday when a few vendors on the beach found a few 'diamonds.' While they soon found that the treasure was nothing but worthless pieces of cut-glass, the word had by then spread.

Nandu Yadav, who sells corn on the beach, shut his shop on Monday as the crowds swelled. He spent the day watching the crowd go about their hunt. 

He was seated at a broken chair and was watching thousands of people digging for diamonds.

Asked why he was not digging, Nandu said: "I found some diamonds on Friday and went to jeweller. He told me it's peace of glass. Another jeweller told me these are fake diamonds used in movies."

No very far from where Nandu sat, there were at least 2,000 people digging feverishly. Every now and then, they would wait for the waves to recede and then get down to the task again.

Another vendor said some jewellers were offering Rs 500 for each piece.

Deepak, an employee at an electronic gadgets firm in Dahisar, took a day's leave to try his luck on the beach. At 1600 IST, he told this correspondent: "I haven't found anything yet. I have been here for an hour now. But I am sure that by late evening I will find some diamonds."

Mukesh, 14, had collected eight pieces by that time. "I am going home to keep these. I'll return after having my lunch".

By 1630 IST, the boy's body had been fished out. It was taken away in a police van.

The over 2000 treasure diggers did not even look up.

Photographs: Arun Patil

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Number of User Comments: 4

Sub: diamonds for donkeys

Diamonds never change life but it adds to the misery to the life. Foolish and poor people are decived by the rumours without any basis ...

Posted by dr.g.madhukar

Sub: diamonds on juhu beach

our indian citizens want every thing easily without any hard work

Posted by sneha bamne

Sub: Diamonds in juhu

for what they are digging for, oil, gold ? no for diamonds.... diamonds are not in juhu they are at panchratna and prasad chember at ...

Posted by manish

Sub: Diamond on Juhu Beach

Its already a two days old story, so How you can describe it as FIRST LOOK. And all those glittering stones found were not diamonds, ...

Posted by Imran


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