A court in Hospet city of Karnataka fined four men who vandalised pillars at the Vishnu Temple Complex in Hampi Rs 70,000 each last week. The court also asked them to re-erect the pillars, The New Indian Express reported on Monday.
The four accused – Ayush from Madhya Pradesh; Raja Babu Chowdary, Raj Aryan and Rajesh Kumar Chowdary from Bihar – were taken to the spot and made to re-erect the pillars in the presence of Archaeological Survey of India officials, the Hampi police inspector and others, Additional Public Prosecutor Geetha Mirajkar said. They were released from judicial custody on February 14, The Hindu reported.
Mirajkar said the youths were arrested on February 8. “The maximum punishment for the act is two years imprisonment or fine up to Rs 1 lakh,” she added. “Offenders will have to serve the jail term if they are unable to pay the fine.”
A video of them vandalising the pillar had gone viral on social media. One of the accused, Ayush, had posted the video on his Instagram account, but deleted it soon after.
Superintendent of Police Arun Rangarajan, of the Ballari district police, had formed four teams to nab the vandals after the Archaeological Survey of India registered a complaint. The four were arrested from Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Madhya Pradesh within a week, following which the Hospet court remanded them in judicial custody.