Thieves returned 14 stolen 'ashtadhatu' idols to the priest of an ancient Balaji temple in UP claiming they were having nightmares after committing the crime, police said on Monday. "16 ashtadhatu idols worth several crores were stolen from the ancient Balaji temple at Taraunha on the night of May 9.
In this connection, Mahant Rambalak had lodged an FIR against unknown thieves," Station House Officer of Sadar Kotwali Karvi, Rajiv Kumar Singh, said. "Out of 16 stolen idols, 14 were found mysteriously in a sack near the residence of Mahant Rambalak on Sunday," he said, adding that the priest also found a letter with the sack in which thieves wrote that they were having scary dreams at night, so because of fear they are returning the idols.
At present all the 14 'ashtadhatu' (made up of eight metals) idols have been deposited in the Kotwali and further action is being taken, he added.
Recently, while trying to escape with stolen silver ornaments from a temple in Andhra Pradesh, a thief got stuck in a hole that he had dug for himself. The incident took place at Jadupudi village, which comes under Kanchili Mandal in the Srikakulam district. The man has been identified as R Papa Rao, 30. He is reported to be addicted to liquor. He entered the Jami Yellamma Temple of Jadupudi village through a small window and looted all the silver ornaments of the idols. These ornaments are said to weigh around 20 grams. Several pictures of Rao have emerged on social media. In the pictures, he can be seen stuck in the wall in a very uncomfortable position. According to several local media reports, the thief had continuously pleaded with passers-by to help him.
The police claimed that he has committed crimes earlier as well to satisfy his addiction to liquor. The police said that Rao would be kept under the district police custody for this and prior cases registered against him. Earlier, he had stolen an LPG cylinder from his own mother’s house. There are also numerous other cases registered against him for similar offences.
(With PTI inputs)