Apparently, the Hanuman idol was burgled along with a Sri Devi idol and Boodevi idol from the Varadharaja Perumal temple in Tamil Nadu’s Vellur village in 2012. In March 2014, the idol was auctioned.
The 14th-15th century Hanuman statue was discovered with a private buyer in Australia.
An idol of Lord Hanuman that was stolen a decade ago from Tamil Nadu and smuggled abroad was repatriated in the month of February. The 14th-15th century statue, belonging to the Vijayanagar period, was discovered with a private buyer in Australia recently.
According to the ASI, this idol was burgled along with Sri Devi idol and Boodevi idol from the Varadharaja Perumal temple in Vellur village in Ariyalur district on April 9, 2012. In March 2014, this idol was auctioned to a buyer in Australia. Upon discovery and consequent investigation, it was found to be the same idol that was stolen from India.
Sources said the New York-based auction house, which had auctioned the idol, and the Australian buyer were unaware that the statue was stolen.
The government has retrieved around 212 artefacts, mainly statues in the last seven years.
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