Kabir rosary theft: Three Thai nationals arrested

The Varanasi police Saturday arrested three Thai nationals accused of stealing a 15th century rosary of Sant Kabir from his Ashram in Chetganj area of the district on November 29.

A wooden sandal (kharaoon) was recovered from them, the police said, adding they were yet to recover the rosary.

The trio and another accused were detained near the Indo-Nepal border in Kushinagar district on Friday in a joint operation of the West Bengal Police, Gorakhpur and Varanasi police. The accused were travelling in a SUV.

They were brought to Varanasi and after initial questioning have been sent to jail. The police have applied for their custody. They have been identified as Patta Rawat, Talabhat and Phruk (Phrek).

The fourth accused was identified as Siri Chai, who was wanted for a theft in Belur Math, the headquarters of Ram Krishna Paramhans Mission, in West Bengal. The theft had occurred in July, in which holy relics of Maa Sharda such as strands of hair, teeth and some other things were stolen. A case in this regard was registered with Bally police station in Howrah.

Confirming the arrests, Inspector General (Varanasi Range), G L Meena, said: "The trio has been arrested. One more monk detained with them was wanted by the Bengal Police. A team of the Bengal police has taken him with them. The rosary has not yet been recovered."

Meena added that he has instructed the police to put the accused through narco test.

Circle Officer (Chetganj), Rakesh Kumar Singh, said: "An application has been moved seeking police custody of the accused for 14 days to unravel the entire plan, as well as to recover the rosary."

Singh said that the recovery of the kharaoon showed that the accused also wanted to take away Sant Kabir's kharaoon kept in the Ashram. "Since it was kept in a well locked cabinet, they could not take it away. Preliminary investigations revealed that Patta Rawat was the one who sat on 'meditation', while Talabhat was the one who distributed money. Phruk was the first one to come out of the sanctorum carrying a jhola (cloth sack). It is possible that they have passed away the rosary to an accomplice," said Singh.

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