Stolen Goddess Parvati Idol Discovered In New York After 50 Years

A statue of the Hindu goddess Parvati that vanished from the Nadanapureshwarar Sivan Temple at Thandanthottam, Kumbakonam, fifty years ago has been found in New York, according to the Tamil Nadu Idol Wing CID (Crime Investigation Department) on Monday. The idol was reportedly found in New York’s Bonhams Auction House, according to the CID. Despite a report being made to the local police in 1971 and an FIR being filed by the idol wing in 2019, the case had remained unresolved. Inspector M. Chitra of the Idol Wing took over the case and made the case public. She also started searching for Chola-era Parvati idols in overseas museums and auction houses.

Though a complaint was given to the local police in 1971 and an FIR registered by the idol wing on a complaint from an individual K Vasu in February 2019, the case was pending since then. It received attention only recently after the Idol Wing Inspector M Chitra took up the investigation, started browsing for the Parvati idols of the Chola period in various museums and auction houses abroad.

After a thorough search, she found the idol at the Bonhams Auction house. The copper-alloy idol of the Chola period circa 12 century measures about 52 cm in height and is valued at US$ 212,575 (about Rs 1,68,26,143), a release from the Idol Wing said.

Parvati or Uma as the Goddess is commonly known in South India is portrayed in standing position. She is seen wearing a crown, called a karanda mukuta of piled rings diminishing in size and culminating in a lotus bud.

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