A fortnight after a temple in Borivli (w) was looted, a Jain temple was plundered by a group of criminals on Sunday, who allegedly took away valuables worth Rs. five lakh and murdered the temple watchman and escaped.
Another watchman, who was injured in the attack, is undergoing treatment at the Bhagwati Hospital.
The MHB Colony police have registered a case of robbery and murder against seven unidentified persons.
According to the police, the incident took place at around 2.30 am on Sunday at Nandishwar Digambar Jain temple located at Sainath Nagar in Borivli (west).
The police said that around seven accused, all dressed in black T-shirt and shorts, tried to enter the temple.
The two watchmen- Devilal Sevak (55) and Ramprasad Joshi (30)- did not suspect them until one of the hoodlums hit Sevak on his head with a blunt object, injuring him grievously.
"The men also thrashed Joshi when he tried to come to Sevak's rescue. The accused then went inside the temple and robbed valuables worth around Rs four lakh. There are no CCTV cameras installed inside the temple," said Additional Commissioner of Police Ramrao Pawar.
Seven Jain idols, one made up of silver and six made of panchdhatu (mixture of five metals) and 17 silver umbrellas placed above the idols were stolen from the temple.
A tanker driver who was near the temple when the incident took place, noticed the watchmen lying in a pool of blood and immediately informed the police control room.
Subsequently, the MHB Colony police was alerted.
The duo was rushed to Bhagwati Hospital where Sevak was declared dead before admission and Joshi is undergoing treatment.
"We are waiting to take Joshi’s detailed statement, which will help us in identifying the accused," added Pawar.
In a similar case, on August 9, an unidentified person broke a donation box inside a Vithal temple in the vicinity and made away with the cash and also took along the another donation box that was found broken and empty a few yards away from the temple.
Though the exact amount stolen could not be not ascertained, the police estimated that the boxes could be containing cash worth atleast over Rs 60,000. No arrests have been made in both the cases.