Antique idols recovered in Chennai; TN police begin probe

The Idol Wing of the CB-CID, Tamil Nadu police has commenced a probe after some antique idols were recovered here. On a tip off, seven antique idols were recovered from the place of Shobha Durairajan (52) — an antique articles collector, at Raja Annmalaipuram in Chennai.

The idol wing found out that idols of Sree Devi, Adhi Kesava Perumal, Bhoodevi, Asthira Devar, Amman, Veera Bhadrar and Mahadevi.

The woman, according to the idol wing police had registered the idols with the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) and had a certification that these idols were more than 300 years old.

Shoba Durairajan, on questioning, told the police team that she had bought the antique idols from Deenadayalan in 2008 and 2015, who owned the Aparna Art Gallery.

The woman told the police that she had documents of all the idols registered with the Archeological Survey of India (ASI).

However, on inspection, the idol wing team of the CB-CID police found that the name of Adhi Kesava Temple, Ulundurpet was found inscribed on the Perumal and Sree Devi idols.

The idol wing police on investigation found that there was a burglary at the Adhi Kesava Temple, Ulundurpet on July 10, 2011, and three idols Adhi Kesava Perumal, Sree Devi, and Bhoodevi had been stolen.

The idol wing also found that the Ulundurpet police had registered a case in 2011 but had closed the case in 2013 as an unsolved one.

The idol wing also found that Shobha Durairajan did not have any records on Adhi Perumal, Sree Devi, or Bhoodevi with her but had registered with the ASI, Shimoga in 2013.

However, she had a receipt signed and issued by the late Deenadayalan from whom she had claimed to have bought these idols.

The idol wing is now investigating on the remaining four idols and the team is of the belief that as the four idols are registered with ASI, Chennai in 2008, the theft would have occurred before that.

The idol wing on verification of the photographs of the three idols Adhi Perumal, Sree Devi, and Bhoodevi matched with those in possession of Shobha Durairajan.

The idol wing has already produced the photographs of the remaining idols to the HR&CE department of the Tamil Nadu government to verify the identity of the temples from where they were stolen.

The DGP of Idol wing police, Jayanth Murali told media persons that the deceased Deenadayalan was directly involved in the case and that Shoba Durairajan as a person possessing the temple idols is culpable.

The idol wing police also told the media persons that the department would soon hand over the idols of Adhi Kesava Perumal, Sree Devi, and Bhoodevi to Adhi Kesava temple, Ulundurpet.

20221213-001203

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