Chennai: In an effort aimed at preventing the theft of idols and also create an online repository of idols of antique value, the State government has proposed to digitise over 1.10 lakh artefacts and tag them, Tamil Official Language and Tamil Culture Minister K. Pandiarajan has informed on Wednesday.
Replying to an issue of theft of temple idols raised by DMK legislator and former Minister Thangam Thennarasu in the Assembly, Mr. Pandiarajan said over 1.10 lakh artefacts in 36 museums across the state would be digitalised soon. “They would be tagged and the information would be made available online,” Mr. Pandiarajan said.
On the cards is to encourage corporates to take up the upkeep of heritage monuments under “adopt a monument” scheme. “A Heritage Commission will be constituted and announced soon with the concurrence of the Chief Minister,” he added.
Seeking the Idol Wing to be strengthened as bronze idols each costing about Rs. 30 crore were stolen and sold as art pieces in international market, Mr. Thennarasu said in the absence of a protection mechanism for the temple idols including those of antique value, the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments department could think of creating a database on the idols available with the temples under its control.