Padma Awardee TN Government Temple Architect Arrested On Theft Charges
Padma Awardee TN Government Temple Architect Arrested On Theft ChargesPalani Temple (Youtube)

The chief sthapathi (temple sculptor) of the Tamil Nadu (TN) government Padmashri M Muthaiah was arrested by the Idol wing of Tamil Nadu Crime Branch on Sunday (25 March).

The Times of India reported that the 74-year old sculptor was arrested on charges of causing a loss of Rs 1.31 crore to the government in the process of making an idol for the Palani Dandayudhapani temple in 2003-04. The sculptor was taken to Kumbakonam and will be produced before a court on Monday (26 March).

Muthiah, who made the idol at his facility in Kelambakkam, has been accused of stealing some of the gold meant for making the idol. A total 41 kg of waste had been generated while making the said idol, but no account had been provided for the quantity of gold in this wastage.

Experts from the Indian Institute of Madras were employed to scrutinise the contents of the idol which was sculpted in 2004 but had turned dark within six months and was shifted to a room in the temple. The daily reported that the idol which was to weigh 200kg had finally ended up weighing 220kg.

The Padma awardee is also an accused in the Kanchipuram Ekambareshwar gold theft case.

An Appeal...

Dear Reader,

As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.

Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.

We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.

Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.

Become A Patron
Become A Subscriber