GUWAHATI: Of late moths and mandirs are on targets of thieves who are on the prowl – in search treasures in temples. After the theft in the centuries-old Ugratara Devalaya in Guwahati on November 16, 2018, a number of other moths and mandirs have been looted in Guwahati and elsewhere in the State.
Even as the main idol of Ugratara Devalaya is yet to be traced, thieves stole away some idols, besides many other valuables from a number of temples on Friday night (November 23). Friday night was a field day for treasure-hunting thieves who have looted at least five temples – four at Maligaon in Guwahati and one at Sualkuchi in Kamrup. The thieves have stolen away the idols of historic Siddheswar Devalaya. The stolen idols are of Goddess Durga and Gopal (Lord Krishna). At the same night, thieves got the better of police and stole valuables from as many as four temples – a Sitala mandir, a Ram mandir, a Hanuman mandir and a Shiva mandir – in the Maligaon area under Gaushala outpost under Jalukbari police station. The thieves took away gold ornaments like a necklace and a pair of nose rings, besides the donation box from the Sitala mandir. The thieves took away the silver eyes of Lord Rama, Hanuman and Lakshman, besides two donation boxes and a few utensil of copper from the Ram Mandir. From the Hanuman mandir, the thieves took away the motorbike of the priest. From the Shiva mandir, the thieves took away a royal umbrella made of silver along with a silver idol of Hanuman, besides two donation boxes.
Guwahati Police Commissioner Pradip Chandra Saloi, along with other top officials, visited the looted temples in Maligaon on Saturday. “We’ve asked the DCPs, ACPs and OCs for discussing security measures to be taken in the temples with the mandir committees, citizens’ committees, priests and village defence parties,” Saloi said, and added: “Even though we’re yet to recover the idol of Ugratara Devalaya, we haven’t lost all hopes. We’re still searching the idol.”
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