Frequent temple thefts in Gods' own country - Kerala!!

Nettur Mahadev temple, Kerala
Paravoor temple.
In the Gods' Own Country- Kerala state  are the gods really  safe anymore from man's greed? The answer is in the negative. Thefts of god's jewelry, etc are on the increase in the past decade, but not on a scale that you would  see in the adjacent state of Tamil Nadu. In Kerala, it is reported that there had been at least one temple theft each day in the state and the value of stolen items may run into several lakhs!  Mostly temple jewelry or other valuable holy  items are stolen and the  theft of idols  seems to be rare in this stste unlike Tamil Nadu where, some unscrupulous officers of HR & CE, in collusion with local thugs or anti-social people, lay their hands on valuable centuries old Iyyempon idols (an alloy of five metals). Their  market value runs into crores due to their antique and heritage value. The police and the state govt are taking serious steps to safeguard the idols in Tamil Nadu and reduce this menace as much as possible.
Poor security system in Kerala temples is the main reason  for the  thefts and  they are under the control of the state government as in other states.  Hundies (donation boxes) and vaults are the  easy targets for the culprits. Devotees drop in the hundies cash  or silver or gold jewels, depending on their monetary status. This is  a token of their gratitude to the god for fulfilling their wish. Invariably, most temples carry god's jewelry, besides cash and jewels dropped in the hundies. Many of Jewels worn by gods  may have antique value  and are kept in a separate vault inside the temples.  No doubt, thieves target these temples to rob the valuables. . Countless  temples  lack either  security guards or security features like lockers or burglar alarms. This has made job easier for the burglers.  People are at a loss to know why the govt. is not giving priority to  security against burglary and break -in of temples at night. Yet another advantage is some temples are located in an isolated areas with lots of trees. The hundis at  most of the temples are not set  in a safe place where thieves can't  access. Fixed in an unsafe place,  it is a lot  easier  for the  professional thieves  to take money out of them rather than put something in them, according to  a senior police officer.
The data at the State Crime Records Bureau (SCRB) mentioned  364 temple thefts in 2007 (it was 291 the previous year). Way back, only 88 cases in 2007 and 111 cases in 2006 have been detected so far.

On 24 May  2013, a gold idol weighing 5.5 kg, of the famous Siva temple at Ettumanoor in Kottayam district of Kerala was stolen. 
 In terms of popularity and divinity, 'Ettumanoorappan' as the devotees call the deity, is second perhaps only to 'Sabarimala Ayyappan' and 'Guruvayurappan' (Sri Krishna) in Kerala. This theft created a political storm and the 'Ettumanoorappan abduction episode' became a serious issue as it had  hurt the sentiments of millions of  Hindu devotees. Culprit was arrested  late and soon the idol was brought back  to  the temple. In the coalition govt, the communist party of India was a partner. 
As we know most of the Communists have atheist mentality 
and are lethargic about the safety of Hindu temples and their valuables in Kerala, people complain. In Tamil Nadu, the communists have close rapport with certain atheist parties 
and they do  not make any comment on temple thefts going on here...........

At the  Nettur Mahadeva Temple, one of the important Shiva temples, the prabhamandalam, antique jewellery worth lakhs 
of rupees was stolen in June 2014. The prabhamandalam, made 
of brass, weighing over 12 kilos is said to be over 1200 years old. Fortunately the  vault with temple jewelry was not broken 
into  and other old priceless temple items  were left behind by the culprits. “An inter-state ring of burglars is suspected to be behind the racket.....

In June 2018, in separate incidents of burglary, thieves  made 
away with 50 sovereigns of gold from two  temples at Paravur 
here in the wee hours of Wednesday. While 30 sovereigns of 
gold, including the holy ornaments adorning the deity, and Rs 60,000 were stolen from Kottupalli Thirukapuram Devi. temple...

Preying on Gods in Gods' own country is quite disgusting  and is akin to committing blasphemous act. The govt should beef up the security system at temple and come up with severe punishments for the people who lay their hands on temple properties that actually belong to the public. Lack of deterrent will pave way for more such thefts!! The robberies at  Pazhoor Perum Thrikkovil temple at Piravom, Triprayar SreeRama temple etc cause a lot of worries among the Hindus. some  theft cases remain unsolved and some might have gone cold with no trace of the robbers.