Chennai, Feb 3 (BPNS)
Tamil Nadu Police idol theft squad is conducting a detailed probe into the source of seven idols that were recovered from a group of people on Wednesday in Madurai.
Idol theft squad have already arrested a BJP minority wing leader T. Alexandar and two cops, head constable Ilankumaran (44) of Jokilpatti police station in Aruppukottai and constable Nagendran( 38) of Armed Reserve police from Dindigul.
Another person, P. Karuppusami (36) of Kooraikundu in Virudhunagar was also arrested. However, two other persons, Rajesh of Ramanathapuram and Ganeshan of Virudhunagar are on the run.
The idol theft squad of the Tamil Nadu police on receiving a tip-off that Alexandar was trying to sell seven idols, was apprehended and idols were recovered. A senior officer with the Idol theft squad told IANS that it has to be ascertained whether the idol is panchaloha or not.
The seven idols that were recovered from Alexandar include, Natarajar (2ft), Natarajar (1.25 ft), Nagakanni(1.5ft), Kaali (1 ft), Murugan(0.75 ft), Vinayagar (0.5 ft) and Nagadevathai (0.5 ft). The idols, according to police was recovered from a water body in Koorisathanar Ayyanar temple, Ramanathapuram.
Alexander on interrogation told the investigating officers that the idols were given to him by Ilankumaran and Karuppasamy who were arrested. The duo informed the role of Nagendran and Ganeshan in the case.
Idol theft squad officers said that the four had threatened a group of smugglers a few years ago stating that they were from the Idol theft squad took in procession the seven idols that were later concealed in the water body.
Police said that the four of them were trying to sell the idols for an amount of Rs 5 crore when the Idol theft squad got a tip-off and arrested the foursome. The Idol theft squad officers told IANS that the investigation as to from where these smugglers had got the idols and whether these idols were stolen from some temples.
A senior officer of the idol theft squad while speaking to BPNS said,” We have already arrested four people and identified two more in the gang who had concealed the idols in a water body at Ramanathapuram. However, we have to get the details of the origin of these idols and to ascertain whether these idols were stolen or whether they were replicas of some idols and trying to sell it bogusly.”