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Controversial Hussain painting traced

Delhi cops trace a 'controversial' MF Hussain painting, which can be used in an obscenity case against the artist.

art and culture Updated: Jul 15, 2007 16:29 IST

A 'controversial' painting of MF Husain has been traced to an auction house in Chennai by Delhi Police, which claims it could be used as evidence in an obscenity case against the 90-year-old artist.

The four-decade-old painting titled "India" has been in the eye of the storm for the painter's alleged obscene depiction of 'Bharat Mata' and 'Dharam Chakra' of the National Emblem.

The painting raised a public outcry and sparked nationwide protests when it was advertised for auction on the Internet in February last year.

A local court, hearing a batch of complaints against the painter on the direction of the Supreme Court, was recently informed by Delhi Police that the question of the painting's sale was still unresolved and this had caused a delay in its seizure.

Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Kamini Lau granted the police more time to seize the painting and file its complete report by August 17.

In his defence, Husain told the Supreme Court earlier that he had already apologised on behalf of the auctioneer who titled his painting 'Bharat Mata'.

He claimed the work in question was untitled and a work of art without a title was not an offence.