CHENNAI: A metal idol belonging to the Mayiladuthurai Veeratteswarar temple has found its way into a museum in the United States. The Idol Wing CID police said that a process is underway to bring the idol back.
The police said that a case under sections 457(2) and 380(2) of the IPC has been filed. A special team of the Idol Wing police were conducting a security audit at Veeratteswarar temple. During the audit, the police found that the Veenadhara Dakshinamurthy idol, of the 36 metal idols, was missing and it has been replaced with a replica.
The police who had obtained pictures of these idols from the French Institute of Pondicherry, analysed the replica and confirmed it was fake. The police said that they suspect that the idol was stolen and smuggled aboard.
During the investigation, the police started looking for the original idol on the websites of numerous museums, art galleries and auction houses. The police found a picture of the idol on the website of the Cleveland Museum. The picture was then analysed and the police found that both the pictures matched. The museum was informed and the process to bring it back is on.
The Idol Wing police are conducting security audits across the Thanjavur, Thiruvarur, Nagapattinam and Mayiladuthurai districts under the orders of Sailesh Kumar Yadhav, ADGP, Idol Wing.