Two antique statues worth hundreds of thousands of dollars stolen from India and displayed at two American museums have been repatriated to India by the US. The two artefacts are among the many objects of art that have been returned to India and his office will continue to focus on repatriating art stolen from India, Vance added."We will continue to work closely with these agencies and with other US authorities to work towards the restitution of antiques that belong in India," he said.
The first statue, 'Lingodhbhavamurti', a granite sculpture depicting an iconic representation of Lord Shiva, dates back to the 12th century-Chola dynasty. Currently valued at about $225,000, it was stolen from Tamil Nadu and was on display at the Birmingham Museum in Alabama. The second phyllite sculpture depicts the bodhisattva of wisdom, 'Manjusri', holding a sword and painted in gold leaf. Dating back to the 12th century, the statue was stolen from a temple near the Bodh Gaya Temple in Bihar in the late 1980s and has a current approximate value of $275,000.
It was repatriated from Ackland Art Museum of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Both of the items were forfeited once the owners were presented with evidence that the artefacts were previously stolen from India. The statues were handed over to India's Consul General in New York, Ambassador Sandeep Chakravorty by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr during a repatriation ceremony at the Indian Consulate on Tuesday.
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