A Pillaiyar statue was stolen from a Sivan temple in Moongilaru, Mullaitivu last Thursday, just days after Sri Lankan police officers detained and threatened the temple's priests last week. Puthukkudiyiruppu police refused to accept a complaint from temple administration, who insisted that the police officers were complicit in the theft.
Earlier this week, the priests were detained for four hours and were threatened to not carry out daily prayers, with temple staff told to stay away despite the island's coronavirus guidance allowing worship without public attendance.
Pillaiyar statue removed from the temple
Stolen Pillaiyar statue
The temple administration stated that the Pillaiyar statue was stolen later that night and police would not accept their case. Puthukkudiyiruppu police have since claimed a complaint has been filed but have not provided supporting documents to verify this.
Last night, a Pillaiyar statue on the A9 road in the North-East had also been vandalised and damaged. Local police have since stated they have launched an investigation to find the culprits.
The militarised COVID-19 response has seen increased incidents of intimidation, surveillance and harassment of Tamils across the North-East with repercussions or accountability very rarely seen against state officials.