Tamil Nadu: Engineer, 3 others try to smuggle idol, held

The idol was recovered and handed over to the concerned authorities.

Chennai: The recently beefed up idol wing-CID of the state police on Tuesday arrested four persons, including an engineer for attempting to smuggle a 600-year-old panchaloha idol to Malaysia. The quartet was arrested near Baluchetti chatram along the Chennai-Bengaluru highway by a team headed by idol wing IGP Pon Manickavel.

Idol wing police pegged the value of the stolen idol- Sundaramurthy Narayana Swamy idol from a temple in Uthiramerur, Kancheepuram, to be Rs 2.35 crore. The arrested were identified as Dhakshinamoorthy (29) and Karthik (25) of Ozhugarai village near Uthiramerur, Kancheepuram, Sekar (28) of Avadi and Mahendran (41) of Tiruvannamalai.

Dhakshinamoorthy is an engineer and is employed at a thermal power plant while Karthik, a diploma graduate, is employed as a sales manager at a private firm. The duo, along with their accomplices had stolen the panchaloha idol from a temple near their village and was in talks with a Malaysia based middleman for the idol to be smuggled, police sources said. The idol wing team who learnt of the smuggling attempt descended on the temple town and rounded up the car in which the quartet was travelling near Ariyaperumbakkam village here. The idol was recovered and handed over to the concerned authorities. All the four arrested were produced before a court in Kumbakonam. Further investigations are on.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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