Mughal era Qurans written in golden letters seized, three held

March 8th, 2008 - 9:29 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, March 8 (IANS) Mughal period Qurans written in golden letters valued at around Rs.50 million ($1.32 million) at the global market were recovered here with the arrests of three people, the police said. The books are said to be the rarest of the rare available in the country.

Sleuths of Delhi Police’s Special Operation Squad (SOS) recovered the books by arresting three people identified as Gurdeep Singh, 48, a resident of Green Park in south Delhi, Sanjay Nathani, 41, of Palam in southwest Delhi and Prasanjit Biswas, 33, of Sagarpur near Palam Saturday.

Police said the three were arrested following a tip-off that they would be meeting at a restaurant near Hazrat Nizammudin railway station in an effort to sell the antique books in the illegal market.

Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime Branch) Satyendra Garg said a policeman acting as a decoy customer was sent Friday to strike a deal with the suspects.

The suspects agreed to deliver the antique books Saturday for Rs.35 million, following which a trap was laid and they were arrested, police claimed.

One laminated leather hardbound brown book entitled “Quran Mazid” in Arabic, another hard bound brown book entitled “Quran Mazid”, also in Arabic and embedded with golden metallic leaves on each face were seized from them.

The police have also seized two cars, a laptop, a magnifying glass and coloured photographs of the books from them.

“Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has confirmed that both the religious books are covered under Antiquity and Art Treasures Act and are rarest of the rare Holy Qurans available in India,” Garg said.

“The trio in their interrogation revealed that they were involved in finance and property business in Delhi and joined hands after acquiring these rare specimens of antiquity,” he added. But, he refused to reveal the source of the books.

Garg said further investigations were underway and more arrests were expected.

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