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Upendra Bharti | HENB | Dantewada | Jan 29, 2017:: A 1000-year-old idol of Lord Ganesha located atop the densely forested Dholkal mountain in Chhattisgarh’s insurgency-hit Dantewada district was damaged by Naxals, police said on Saturday. The vandalised idol was found at the bottom of the hill, they said.
Police suspect involvement of Naxals in vandalising the idol citing that rebels were frustrated with the frequent movement of tourists and devotees to the place.
“We have started a probe in the case,” Dantewada Superintendent of Police Kamlochan Kashyap told Press Trust of India.
Mr Kashyap along with Dantewada Collector Saurabh Kumar reached there for investigation.
The SP ruled out any attempt to steal the idol citing that the 4-feet idol was placed on a steep vertical hill and it was not possible for some persons to lift it from there.
The mountain range lies 14 kms deep inside forest from Faraspal police station of the district, around 450 kms away from Raipur. One has to reach to the place on foot through forest route as no road is available there.
The ancient Ganesha idol, allegedly destroyed by the Maoists in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada, has been recovered by the local Hindus. The idol which was thrown from a height of 13,000 feet, was found broken in 56 pieces. It was suspected that Maoists had destroyed the thousand-year-old Ganesha statue. The photograph of the place where the Dholkal idol was placed went viral. The statue was found missing first on January 26, when a group of pilgrims visited the place. The local tribal people of Jamguda village told that they saw the statue for the last on January 25th evening.
The Dholkal Ganesh idol at the height of 13,000 feet in Dantewada, which is known for its dense forest. It was discovered by a local journalist in 2012 while exploring the region, after which a huge search operation was carried out by archaeology department.
During the research, it was found out that the idol was made at the time of Nagvanshi dynasty around ninth century AD. Many stone weapons were also discovered in the vicinity, which was seen as sign of early human life. The state of Chhattisgarh is also home to many rock-art paintings which seemed to be among the oldest in the world.
Hearing the news of such Maoist vandalism on Dholkal Ganesh, many Hindu devotees went to spot to collect the broken pieces of the idols and reinstalled those on the hilltop to worship the Lord Ganesh once again.
As per latest report, the local Hindu devotees are arranging an abhishekam (devotional adoration) and puja (worship) of the lord on the Ganesh Chaturthi falls on 31 Jan.