CHENNAI, INDIA, May 20, 2017 ( Deccan Chronicle): A major murthi theft racket involving idol trafficker Subhash Chandra Kapoor, who has been arrested and detained in Tiruchy prison for his involvement in various smuggling cases, has come to light more than 40 years after a large number of Deity statues that had been robbed from an ancient Saivite temple at Veerasolapuram near Kallakurichi in Villupuram district, have been located. The temple was built by during the period of Emperor Rajendra Chozan. Several murthis stolen from the nearly 1,000 year old Sri Arthanareeswara temple, Veerasolapuram have been found in museums in USA. Many others could not be traced, an art enthusiast Vijayakumar said.
According to an estimate, 78 ancient murthis were robbed from the shrine. A local resident, Varadan, said more than 40 years ago several murthis were stolen from the temple. The cops nabbed 4 persons and seized four murthis from a river bed near the temple. However, no case has been registered in connection with murthi theft so far. As the local residents were unable to maintain the temple, the murthis were handed over to Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department. After the Madras High court formed the special Idol Wing headed by A.G. Pon Manickavel, Inspector General, the case was handed over to the wing, which commenced the investigation recently. Preliminary investigation reveals that the ancient murthis were allegedly stolen by a gang led by Subhash Kapoor in 1977-1978.
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA, May 18, 2018 (India Life and Times): The Charlotte North and South chapters of Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS) celebrated the Teacher's Appreciation Day (Guru Vandana) to honor the teacher community of Cabarrus, Charlotte-Mecklenburg counties in recognition of their service in educating and shaping the lives of kids. Around 30 teachers, professors, principals from several schools around Charlotte were honored in a grand ceremony that was attended by over 150 people. Several enthusiastic HSS volunteers, especially the kids of various age groups, entertained and honored their teachers in the traditional Hindu way.
The program started with a ceremonial lamp lighting and Ganesh Vandana (prayer to Lord Ganesha). HSS volunteers Mrs. Sudeeba Bhaskaran and Mrs. Sreelatha Das who were the emcees for the program welcomed the teachers and the audience and explained the relevance of lamp lighting and Ganesh Vandana. This was followed by an enthralling Kathak dance performance by Mrs. Toshi and Ms. Prachi to welcome the guests. Mrs. Ashwini Santosh (HSS Volunteer) in her welcome speech went over the importance of guru (teacher) in Hindu culture and how they are instrumental in shaping the lives of the students and the future of the nation. The word guru itself stands for Remover of darkness.
Photos at "source" above.
On the pathway of spiritual excellence, words that discourage and those that publicize faults of others are lethal poisons.
-- His Divine Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, spiritual head of Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha
http://zeenews.india.com/andhra-prade ... unds-removed-2110149.html
TIRUPATI, INDIA, May 21, 2018 (Zee News): A controversy has broken out over the removal of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) chief priest AV Ramana Deekshitulu. The move came days after he alleged that the administrators of the temple were swindling money. The decision to remove Ramana was taken after the TTD Trust Board passed a resolution on Wednesday to state that all mirasi archakas (hereditary priests) must be retired on reaching the age of 65. In his place, Venugopala Deekshitulu has been hired as head priest at the Lord Venkateswara temple atop Tirumala.
Ramana has alleged that the Tirupati temple administration misuses the offerings, as per Zee Media reports. He has also leveled allegations against Andhra Pradesh's Chief Minister, saying that that the he chooses the board members and has diverted approximately US$14.7 million of temple funds for his political use. TTD is an independent trust which manages the Tirumala Venkateswara Temple at Tirumala, Andhra Pradesh. It also manages many other temples in Tirupati and all around the world.
INDIA, May 22, 2018 (The News Minute): BJP MP Subramanian Swamy has waded into the issue of the sacking of Tirumala chief priest Dr. A.V. Ramana Deekshitulu, saying that he has decided to approach the Supreme Court to quash the dismissal by the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD). "I have decided after seeing the grossly illegal exercise of power of TTD in sacking the Head Priest Ramana Dikshitalu. Hence I will move the SC for quashing the sacking and seek also a Court monitored CBI investigation into the financial misappropriation of Temple funds by TTD," Swamy tweeted.
This comes after Deekshitulu addressed the media last week in Chennai where he disclosed that the priests have filed a petition against the administrators demanding transparency pertaining to donations and jewelery. A few Hindu organisations have also held protests and staged a demonstration against the TTD on Saturday, questioning its decision to remove Deekshitulu after he made serious allegations against the governing board of the temple.