The Narendra Modi government has said it has brought back over 105 stolen artefacts and antiquities from abroad and 94 more will be soon reaching India from the US. The government has given a year-wise break-up of the last two decades which show the UPA government brought back one such artefact in over the 10 years of its reign.
In a written reply to Parliament, the government said that in the last two decades, one antiquity was brought back from Holland in 2001, one from France in 2013, and 105 artefacts and antiquities were brought back from 2014 till 2021. The biggest lot retrieved was earlier this year from the US when 63 antiquities were handed back to India during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit.
“The USA has handed over 157 antiquities related to Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism during the recent visit of Prime Minister to USA. Out of 157 antiquities, first lot of 63 antiquities has reached India. Nine antiquities have been retrieved from Australia,” the government told Parliament.
The one retrieval in the UPA tenure was an antiquity of Yogini Vrishanana from France in 2013.
The government said it has brought back the idol of Goddess Annapurna and has handed over the idol to the government of UP. The stolen antiquities brought back in the Modi government were from the US, UK, Canada, Germany, Singapore and Australia.
These include a Nataraja, Ardhanareeswar, Parrot Lady, Durga, bronze image of Saint Manikkavachaka, metal image of Ganesha, metal image of Bhoodevi, metal image of Chakkarathalawar, a seated Buddha, stone image of Pratyanigra, Bodhisattva head, metal statue of Rama, Sita and Lakshmana and Devi Annapurna. They have been handed over to archaeological museums in various states like Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, and the National Museum in Delhi.