Jewel-studded utensils worth 50-crore stolen from Hyderabad’s Nizam museum
Diamond-studded golden tiffin box, jewel-studded cup and saucer set and a spoon studded with rubies were stolen from Nizam museum in Hyderabad late on Monday, police said.
According to the police, precious artefacts belonging to Mir Osman Ali Khan, the last Nizam of the erstwhile Hyderabad state, were stolen from the Nizam Museum at Purani Haveli in the old city in the early hours of Monday.
The total weight of the valuables was estimated to be 2.5 kilos. Though the exact value of the missing artefacts is yet to be estimated, the police suspect it to be around Rs 50 crore, police said.
The burglars, according to the police, broke open the wooden ventilator of the museum and got into the hall using a rope. The closed circuit television camera (CCTV) near the ventilator, which was meant for keeping a surveillance on the museum shelves, appeared to be deliberately twisted to ensure that nothing was recorded.
“Instead of breaking open the glass of the showcase, the thieves cleverly unscrewed it and stole the antique pieces kept in the shelves,” Hyderabad city police commissioner P Anjani Kumar, who inspected the museum late in the evening, told reporters.
The Nizam Museum, established in the year 2000, comprises more than 450 artefacts which were gifted to the seventh Nizam during the coronation of his silver jubilee in 1937. It also houses some other valuable objects belonging his father Mir Mahboob Ali Khan, the sixth Nizam.
The museum is also home to Nizam’s cars including 1930 Rolls Royce, a 150-year-old manually operated lift and wardrobe of sixth Nizam, who was the richest man in the world in 1930s.
The museum remains open for visitors from 10 am to 5 pm all through the week except on Friday, which is a holiday. After the visiting hours on Sunday, the museum staff locked the museum, leaving the premises to as many as five security guards who were on night duty.
The police booked a case of theft following the complaint from the administrative officer of the museum and the Nizam Trust. “The dog squad was pressed into service to track the thieves and the Clues team of the city police has collected samples. We have formed 10 special teams to investigating the case including the probable role of the insiders,” the commissioner said.
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