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Nizam's shoes worth $140,000 stolen

A pair of diamond and emerald encrusted shoes worn by the Nizam of Hyderabad in the 1790s have been stolen from a museum in Toronto.

india Updated: Jan 24, 2006 17:11 IST

A pair of diamond and emerald encrusted slippers worn by the Nizam of Hyderabad in the 1790s have been stolen from a museum in Toronto.

The slippers, valued at $140,000, were stolen from a Bata Shoe Museum display case on Sunday.

The slippers were encrusted with diamonds, rubies and emeralds and were embroidered with gold.

The theft was discovered by a staff member as the museum, home to 10,000 shoes dating back to the 1500s, prepared to close on Sunday.

The theft did not set off the museum's security alarm, The Toronto Star reported.

Police say they are looking at security videos and interviewing witnesses and staff. They believe the thieves may have already lined up a buyer.

Museum curator Elizabeth Semmelhack said the real value of the slippers was historic, not monetary.

"These were gems used for decorative purpose. They're not jewellery quality, so if anyone is under the impression that these can be sort of torn apart and be used for gem value, that just isn't the case," she told Canadian Television.

The shoes were not used for walking, but worn by the the Nizam while he sat on his throne.

"They (Nizam) just had unbelievable wealth and so you can imagine this pair of shoes," said Semmelhack, who said the pair was covered by the museum's insurance.

The regal slippers had been on display since June last year.

First Published: Jan 24, 2006 16:49 IST