Three 15th century AD, sculptures of Lord Ram, Sita, and Lakshman, was handed over to the High Commission of India in London by British Police on Tuesday. The idols were stolen from a temple in Tamil Nadu in 1978. Minister of Culture Prahlad Singh Patel thanked the UK government for ensuring the return of the idols.
Archaeological Survey of India and the High Commission of India, London for their efforts to bring these precious idols back to India. “It is a matter of happiness that since independence we received only 13 sculptures from foreign countries but since 2014 we have received more than 40 sculptures and we are trying to get more sculptures in the coming years. We are talking to British Museum to bring the Vag Devi idol back to India,” Patel said.
The bronze images of Lord Rama, Lakshamana, and Mata Sita are 90.5cm, 78cm, and 745cm in height respectively, and are masterpieces of Indian Metal Art. These sculptures were stolen from the Nagapattinam district of Tamil Nadu, South India in 1978 from a Vijayanagar period temple. The sculptures are datable to the 15th century AD the statement from the ministry said.