KAKINADA: The local police arrested 39-year-old Vanumu Lakshmana Rao of Pagadalapeta on Monday on the charge of removing the trident (Trisul) from a hand of the goddess at Nookalamma Temple in Kondaiahpalem area here.
Circle inspector P. Eswarudu said Lakshmana Rao worked as daily labourer and was separated from his wife for the past few years. He came to Kondaiahpalem for work and consumed liquor in the evening. In a drunken state, he reached up to the idol positioned outside the temple and removed the trident. In the process, a part of the hand of the goddess was also broken.
Eswarudu said the accused was identified from CCTV footage. Police registered a case.
Meanwhile, Prakasam district police arrested five persons from various places for engaging in false propaganda via social media over damage to the idols of Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Narasimha Swamy placed on an arch near the Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy temple at Singarayakonda a few days ago.
The Singarayakonda police had booked a case against 33 persons (24 persons for false postings on Facebook, five persons on twitter and four on YouTube), charging them with hurting the sentiments of devotees via the social media. Eight persons were arrested on January 5.
Police arrested five more persons from different parts of the state on Monday. They were Thotakura Anil Kumar 36 of Ongole, Mandadapu Srinivasa Rao 42 of Guntur, Chenchennagari Naresh Kumar Reddy 27 of Ananthapur, Budda Devendra Kumar 38 of Visakapatnam and Bodicherla Nagamallikarjun 23 of Kadapa district.
Prakasam SP Siddharth Kaushal said the rest of the accused would be identified and arrested using technology and legal action against them would follow.
Meanwhile, EO of the Sri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy temple at Singarayakonda has explained that the damage to the idols was due to the blowing off of the cement scales on the arch built 20 years ago.
The arch was to be repaired two years ago. But, the work could not be done last year due to the Covid-19 spread. Police said some media persons and others spread rumours about the damage to idols even after additional SP B. Ravi Chandra explained the reasons for the damage....