India’s ‘Parrot Lady’ is to return home, after Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Wednesday handed over to his counterpart, Narendra Modi, the 800-year-old Indian sandstone sculpture of a woman holding a parrot.
The sculpture dates back to the 12th century. It was returned in accordance with the 1970 UNESCO Convention, tweeted External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin.
“Canada returns Indian heritage piece — “Parrot Lady” PM @narendramodi receives sandstone sculpture from Khajuraho,” he tweeted.
The prized Indian statue was returned at the Library of Parliament in Ottawa. Mr. Modi in exchange presented Mr. Harper with a miniature painting of Guru Nanak Dev with his disciples. The painting is by Jaipur-based artist, Virendra Bannu.
The three-foot high statue of ‘Parrot Lady’ turned up in Canada in 2011 in the possession of an individual who did not have proper documentation; it was seized under the Cultural Property Export and Import which controls antiquities and other cultural objects being imported from foreign states, reports The Globe and Mail .
“The Parrot Lady is what is known as a naayika, or heroine. She is voluptuous, scantily clad, posed in a manner that is a tad saucy, and has a parrot on her back. She is just one of many erotic stone ladies that were created to adorn the Khajuraho temples,” says the Canadian daily.