The Indian government has returned 29 ancient artefacts to India from Australia, including a statue of Lord Shiva and one of his disciples, an idol of the goddess Durga, and a statue of the god Vishnu, in what is a historic move. The artefacts were taken from India by the British colonial administration and later passed on to Australia. The artefacts are spread across six broad categories, according to the themes of worship of Lord Shiva and his disciples, worshipping the goddess Shakti, depicting Lord Vishnu and his avatars, Jain tradition, portraits and decorative objects. The artefacts were returned on behalf of the Australian government by the honor.

These are primarily sculptures and paintings made using a variety of material – sandstone, marble, bronze, brass and paper

These artefacts are significant not only because they reflect the rich heritage of the Indian subcontinent, but also because they speak volumes about the religious and cultural practices of a large geographical region in India – Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and West Bengal. 

“I would like to especially thank you for taking the initiative to return ancient Indian artefacts. Among them are hundreds of years old idols and pictures illegally removed from Rajasthan, West Bengal, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh along with many other Indian states,” said the PM.

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