Slow Progress In Registration Of Temple Idols In Tamil Nadu As ASI Struggles With Staff CrunchA Mahavishnu idol.

Idol registrations in Tamil Nadu temples, which are maintained by the Hindu Religious Charitable and Endowments (HR&CE), have only moved forward at an extremely slow pace, with the Archaeological Survey of India, which was responsible for the registrations, has only as of now registered only 150 such religious icons, reports The Times of India.

The registration process includes things such as photographs, size of the artefact and its location; the process of registration is useful in case an antique statue is stolen and even smuggled out of the state.

ASI, in the past year, has only been able to register objects at less than 50 temples, while the state has around 1.5 lakh idols, other sculptures and heritage objects in about 36,000 temples which fall under the administration of the HR&CE. Last year saw only 150 registrations, whereas, in the past 40 years, there were approximately 40,000 registered temple artefacts.

"Paucity of staff is a major bottleneck for registrations. A dedicated registering officer is needed to speed up the process in the absence of which, the process has taken a backseat" said an ASI official.

Archaeological veterans emphasise the urgency of getting more human resources to continue with the registration process.

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