June 18, 2017
The Department of Archaeology has handed over four idols that it received last month from America to National Museum Chhauni. The department said that John Mage, a law counsellor in New York, sent the idols to Nepal last month. Among the four idols, two are 15th century Marvijay Buddha’s idol and Sthanak Amoghpash Lokeshwor’s idol. The other two are 16th century Sthanak Amoghpash Lokeshwor’s idol and 17th century Manjushree’s idol. The Department organized a press conference on its premises to make the idols public.
During the press conference, the department’s Director General Dr. Bhesh Narayan Dahal said that the idols were either stolen or taken away from Nepal years back and were being returned after Nepal signed Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property.
The department’s officials said that each idol costs a minimum 1.5 to 2 million rupees.
The idols came back to Nepal after Lain Singh Bangdel published a book The Stolen Images of Nepal in 1989.