JAYANKONDAM: People of Sri Puranthan village are expecting that the bronze Natarajar idol which was recovered will be brought to the temple during the Kumbabhishegam ceremony scheduled for November 9. It is said that the idol was worth about `30 crore.
Panchayat president of the village Kalavathi Subramaniyan said, “We have already started preparations for the Kumbabhishegam ceremony of the Shiva temple before the arrival of the Natarajar idol to Jayankondam court. Expecting the arrival of the idol to Jayankondam has given us happiness. So we have decided and requested the judicial magistrate through a petition to bring the idol to the temple during the ceremony. We hope the idol will be brought to temple and if it happens, we will do a special puja.”
The recovered Natarajar idol was not the main deity of the temple.
Ulaganathan of CPI party and a native of the village said, “Totally, 8 idols have been stolen from our village temple and only the Natarajar idol has been recovered. We heard that three more idols have been found in the US and one idol in some other country. We want the idol wing officers to take steps to bring all four of these idols to the temple during the festival. Village people are ready to provide 24-hour security to the temple.”
As the Chola-era temple premise was left uncared for many years in the past, now the cleaning work is to be carried out in the view of Kumbabhishegam ceremony. Renovation and painting of the temple structures were underway.
When contacted, HR&CE department’s assistant commissioner P Kothandaraman said, “Considering the request of the village people, we will take necessary steps to bring the idol to the temple for the ceremony. We will follow the court procedure. However, considering the security aspect, the idol will be brought to the temple a day before the Kumbabhishegam and will be taken back to Kumbakonam a day after the festival.”
At present, the recovered Natarajar idol is at an idol protection centre in a temple at Kumbakonam.
Village people said, “We are eagerly waiting the day when all the stolen idols are returned to the temple permanently after all the court cases and procedures.”