Uchila; Mar 08: A case of missing of more than Rs 50 lakh worth of gold ornaments from Uchila Shree Mahalingeshwara temple, near Padubidri in Udupi district has been came to light recently.
It was said that according to the complaint lodged by four of the Uchila citizens in religious Endowment department, trustee temple administration and chief priest U.Ganesh Bhat and Manager Venkatesh Navda have committed irregularities in their dealings during the past ten years.
Accordingly when assistant police commissioner S.M.Doddamani and Prashanth Kumar Shetty from religious Endowment department have visited the place and conducted an investigation on Mar 07,Friday,it came to light that gold ornaments kept inside the locker were missing.
Details of the incident:
According to the sources on Mar 02, during Shree Mahalingeshwara temple’s annual car festival day (Rathotsava) day, public observed that god was not adorned with gold ornaments as was the usual practice instead god’s idol was decorated with fake gold ornaments (imitation ornaments).When it was enquired with concerned people, missing incident of God’s gold ornaments came to light.In the wake of this incident, complaint was given to religions Endowment department. When it was confirmed in the meeting convened by the villagers on Mar 07, Friday that gold ornaments were missing from the locker of the temple, a separate complaint was lodged in religious Endowment department.
In the back drop of complaint, assistant police commissioner, who arrived to temple on Mar 07, Friday evening, opened the lock of the locker in front of trustee Ganesh Bhat and villagers and it was observed that entire locker was empty except silver palanquin and other silver pooja items, kept in the locker room worth more than Rs one lakh.
When Ganesh Bhat was questioned about the missing gold ornaments, he said verbally that those ornaments were given to one Mr.Nagarja Bhat, a local and currently he is missing.
At the same time, when the related documents were checked, it was also found that no account of gold was documented after 2008.Locals have lodged a complaint with assistant police commissioner alleging the involvement of Ganesh Bhat, trustee in the irregularities.
On Monday next step:
As there is comprehensive information about the ornaments available with the department of the temple, after conducting a thorough verification, a detailed report will be submitted to commissioner through district administrator by Monday. If the missing of temple’s gold ornaments proved, confirmed, a criminal case will be filed against the accused said assistant commissioner of police Doddamani and also remaining silver ornaments will be kept in taluk treasury on Monday, he said.