THANJAVUR: The two 11th century bronzes of Rajaraja Chola and his queen Lokmadevi, stolen from the Peruvudayar temple more than 50 years ago and since recovered from a museum in Ahmedabad, will be brought to the temple on Friday. The idols would subsequently be produced before the designated court in Kumbakonam hearing idol theft cases.
Sources said the idols were brought to Chennai from the Calico Museum of Sarabhai foundation in Ahmedabad by the idol wing police on Thursday and would be transported to Thanjavur on the early hours of Friday. They would be brought to the Big temple in the afternoon. After completing the formal procedures there, the idols would be taken to Tiruvaiyaru and then to Kumbakonam.
The idols are expected to be produced at the Kumbakonam court, which has been hearing the cases of idol theft, on Saturday. After getting the orders from the court, the bronzes would be installed in the big temple sources said. The rare bronze idols were stolen around 50 years ago from the Big temple, Thanjavur and sold to Sarabhai museum through a person from Sarukkai village. The idol wing police registered a case during the first week of March and cracked the case. The team led by Inspector General of Police Pon Manickavel went to Ahmedabad and retrieved the idols from the museum on May 29.
Before they were stolen, the rare bronze idols of legendary
king Rajaraja Chola and his consort Lokmadevi, worth over `150 crore, were kept in the north western side of the Mahamandapam of the Peruvudayar Temple. Also called the Brihadishvara Temple, it was built in the 11th century AD, and stands as testimony to the architectural finesse achieved by the Cholas