2.5 kg silver vanishes from palanquin at Kanchi temple

During an inspection at Ekambaranathar temple in Kancheepuram, the Hindu Religious & Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) department officials auditing the temple properties found at least 2.5 kg of silver missing from a 200-year-old silver palanquin at the temple.
HR and CE officials inspecting the palanquin at the Kanchi temple
HR and CE officials inspecting the palanquin at the Kanchi temple

Chennai

The temple administration is already facing Idol wing probe for alleged swindling of six kg gold while making a new Somaskandar idol three years ago.
The sliver palanquin has been used for taking out the main deity during festival possessions. When last inspected in 1954, it had 11 kg of silver on it. “But a recent inspection revealed it had only 8.5 kg silver. Nearly 2.5 kg silver has mysteriously vanished,” said an HR&CE official.
Silver sheets stuck in many parts of the palanquin has been ripped off, leaving the wooden skeleton exposed.
Though officials are supposed to inspect valuables at HR&CE-managed temples periodically, such was not the case with Ekambaranathar temple, devotees had alleged.
In 2018 and 2019, the idol wing investigators had initiated legal actions against senior HR&CE officials, temple priests and chief stapathi in connection with the alleged misappropriation of gold during the consecration of the new Somaskandar idol. A report is expected to be submitted to the commissioner of HR&CE once the team finishes the audit which started on October 23.

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