Participants of the three-day World Culture Festival organised by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's Art of Living Foundation have registered over 70 First Information Reports related to theft during the event that ended on Sunday. The Indian Express reported that 30 people, including four women, have been arrested in cases related to theft of cash, mobile phones, laptops and even a Ganesh idol. The event was organised to mark the foundation's 35th anniversary.
“We have nabbed several people who came from outside Delhi, and recovered a large number of stolen valuables from their possession,” said Manpreet Singh Randhawa, DCP, Delhi Police. Apart from Delhi, those arrested were from Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The police is still processing many complaints, and the number of FIRs could rise, said the report.
Art of Living is already battling criticism about environmental damage caused by organising the event on the banks of the Yamuna and misusing the army to build a pontoon bridge. The foundation has paid Rs 25 lakh of a Rs 5-crore fine imposed on it by the National Green Tribunal for damaging a 1,000-acre area. The festival was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other world leaders.