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Nine stone sculptures stolen in three years, says Minister Prahlad Singh Patel

Theft took place in institutions run by the Archaeological Survey of India

Nine stone sculptures were stolen in six different cases of theft of antiquities from Centrally-protected monuments, sites or museums run by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) in the past three years, according to the Ministry of Culture.

While answering a question by BJP MP Devusinh Jesingbhai Chauhan, Culture and Tourism Minister of State (independent charge) Prahlad Singh Patel told the Lok Sabha on Monday that “six cases of theft of antiquities have been reported from Centrally-protected monuments/sites/site museums managed by the ASI across the country during the last three years and the current year.”

The Minister said that whenever any theft of antiquity is reported, an FIR is lodged and a look-out notice is issued.

In November 2017, a stone sculpture of Nandi was stolen from Sri Anandavalli Ammavaru Temple at the Parasurameshwara Swamy Complex in Andhra Pradesh's Chittoor district. It is yet to be recovered, the Minister stated.

In February 2016, three stone sculptures – standing figures of Siva and Parvati and Lakulisha – were stolen from the ancient ruins at Kalyanpur in Rajasthan's Udaipur district. Then, in July 2016, two Bhairava stone sculptures were stolen from Dantewada in Chhattisgarh. In November of the same year, a stone sculpture of Nandi was stolen from the Sri Kumararama Bhimeswara Swamy temple in Samalkot Mandal of Andhra Pradesh's East Godavari district. Also in November 2016, a stone sculpture of Ganesha was stolen from the open mandap of Vigneswara shrine of Ramalingeswara temple complex in Karnataka. None of these stolen objects have been recovered yet, he said.

In one case, however, the stolen antiquity was recovered. On December 12 and 13, 2016, a stone sculpture of Nandi was stolen from the Veerabhadra Temple in Andhra Pradesh’s Prakasam district. The local police recovered the antiquity on December 18, 2016, the Minister said.

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Printable version | Feb 25, 2020 2:54:14 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/nine-stone-sculptures-stolen-in-three-years-says-minister-prahlad-singh-patel/article28335843.ece

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