Within a span of a few days murtis of Hindu deities and the Vel(spear) of Murugan were vandalized in Tamil Nadu. While the culprits who vandalized the murtis aren’t caught yet, police arrested the person who broke the Vel in Palani. He has been identified as mentally unstable. However the repeated incidents of temple attacks where the culprits are identified as “mentally unstable” have raised suspicion among Hindus that police is perhaps hiding information.
On December 11, all the murtis in Nagathamman temple in Tiruppur were vandalized by an unidentified mob. The temple is located in Yasin Babu Nagar where Muslims seem to live in majority. The temple was attacked by some unidentified people in the night after the pujari had left for home. Upon returning the next day, pujari found Karupparayan swami and Ganesha’s murtis vandalized and the clay horse of the deities was also broken.
The brass Vel installed at the front of the temple was also found to have been bent, in an attempt to break it. Local Hindus and Hindu organizations gathered in front of the temple and staged a protest demanding the police to catch the culprits soon. At the same time Muslims gathered in front of the mosque located in the same area. However police asked them to disperse fearing clashes.
In another similar incident in Villupuram Adi Valeeswarar temple, a man was seen breaking open the hundi and trying to steal the money in broad daylight on December 12. Even though the pujari who was performing the morning puja saw him and tried to catch him he escaped. Only then did the pujari notice that the Dakshinamurthy, Brahma, Lakshmi and Saraswati figurines on the temple tower were vandalized. A few months some miscreants had broken into the same temple and vandalized the murtis in the middle of the night.
In Palani, one of the six abodes of Murugan, granite sculptures of Vel and peacocks, the weapon and vahan of the deity are installed near the bus stand. Flower vendors near the spot reverently put garlands on the Vel and offer worship everyday. On December 17, a man suddenly climbed inside the fence and broke the Vel. Passersby and shop keepers caught him red handed, thrashed him and handed him over to the police.
Hindus protested against this vandalism and demanded that a new Vel should be reinstalled. The police department installed a new Vel sculpture the next day. The perpetrator was let off as he was in an intoxicated state and didn’t know what he was doing. However Hindu organizations allege that people involved in crimes against temples are branded as “mentally unstable or drunken” and let off.
In September a Muslim man had set fire to two temple chariots in Perambalur. Despite him saying clearly that he set fire to the chariots and would do it again and again if he gets the chance, he was let off by police who said he is mentally ill. The man who broke the Vel has a Hindu name and could be a Hindu in all probability. Other perpetrators of crimes against temples could be Hindus as well. But the fact that even those who are Hindus in name vandalize temples speaks a lot about the Dravidian organizations’ propaganda and the loss of sanatani culture.