- Seven days after a fifth century, sandstone Buddha head was stolen
from the Archaeological Long gallery of the Indian Museum, city
police have hit upon what it should have done moments after the
discovery of the theft.
On Thursday, they engaged divers to
search the museum pond behind the Geological Survey of India building.
But without any positive result.
"The divers stopped just short
of emptying the pond of water, but couldn’t come up with anything
of value," said a witness.
"The divers were from Physical
Association in Ahiritola. We decided to search the pond last night
and contacted the organisation," said a detective department
The divers worked for over an hour
in the morning. "They searched thoroughly, from the middle
of the pond to the corners. But nothing was found," said Peeyush
Pandey, deputy commissioner of police (detective department).
Engaging divers so many days after
the theft triggered controversy among the investigating agencies.
"It is not clear why the city
police took so long to decide to search the pond. Even if the culprits
had kept the head under water, they must have taken it away by now.
The pond should have been searched the day after the theft was detected,"
said an officer of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which
was handed over the charge of investigation two days ago.
Sleuths of the detective department
agreed. "We should have carried out the search immediately
after the theft was noticed. Officers who investigated the case
should not have reacted so late," said a senior officer of
The CBI did not take over the case
diary of the theft on Thursday.
"They will take over within a
day or two. However, they are in touch and are collecting information
from us," said another officer of the detective department.
The CBI sleuths held a series of meetings
with senior officers of the city police on Thursday.
"We are chalking out the course
of our investigation. Preliminary work has already been done and
it has been decided what aspects will get priority during the course
of our probe," said a CBI official.
"The Interpol is yet to be informed.
We will contact them after completing the ground-level work,"
Officers of detective department said
that they were assisting the CBI in the case. [TELEGRAPH, INDIA]
Related story: Indian police continue
search for missing Buddha head