India blinks as art treasures disappear

14 Oct 2011 9:21 AM | Anonymous

India blinks as art treasures disappear
By Neeta Lal

NEW DELHI - The Indian art world received a hi-voltage jolt recently when two paintings by legendary Russian artist Nicholas Roerich worth US$2 million, earlier filched from the premises of the Indian Agriculture Research Institute (IARI) in New Delhi, resurfaced at an auction-exhibition in London.

Depicting the incandescent Himalayas, both paintings were a part of a cachet of the prized works of Roerich, a brilliant artist who went to India in 1923 and stayed until his death in 1947.

Ironically, the heist came to light only when London authorities contacted IARI, whose officials were until then clueless about how the works had been pinched from under their noses and smuggled out of the country. The institute is now scrambling to "catch the

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