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Sanjeev Kumar Pradhan

Rayagada: Unidentified miscreants looted the Astadhatu idol of the presiding deity of Manikeshwari temple at Khedapada village near Therubali in Rayagada district late Thursday night.

According to reports, some miscreants allegedly broke open the main door of the temple late last night and decamped with the precious idol which is said to be an antique statue.

The matter came to light after the priest of the temple first witnessed the temple wide open with its doors broken in the wee hours today.

Palpable tension prevailed in the village after the priest informed about the incident to the locals.

On receiving information a team of Chandili police rushed to the spot and initiated a probe into the incident. A team of forensic officials also visited the spot to conduct investigation.

A complaint has been registered at the police station and the culprits will be nabbed and the idol of the temple deity will be recovered soon, informed a police official.

It is pertinent to mention that several incidents of theft and burglary have been reported from temples at several places across the State in last few months.

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