The wooden posts from where the tridents were stolen. Picture by Amit Datta
Two decorative brass tridents have been stolen from the ancestral home of Swami Vivekananda. The theft was discovered on Friday morning at the Gour Mohan Mukherjee Street address in north Calcutta.
The tridents were screwed onto wooden posts in a railing on the first-floor verandah of the building, which was named Ramakrishna Mission Swami Vivekananda’s Ancestral House and Cultural Centre after the Belur Math-headquarted order took it over.
“There were 15 such tridents, of which two were stolen,” said Damayanti Sen, the deputy commissioner of police, detective department.
An officer of the local Girish Park police said scratch marks on the wooden bases suggested that the thieves had tried to take away a few more tridents.
“Each brass trident was a foot long and weighs 2.5 kg. We suspect drug addicts from nearby localities were behind the theft,” the officer added.
Swami Shivamayananda, the secretary of the centre, said the tridents were in place when a worker last saw them around 8pm on Thursday. “Around 6am on Friday, when another worker came on a routine visit, the two tridents were missing.”
Sleuths suspect the thieves scaled the compound’s boundary wall — around 10ft tall — and climbed a pillar to reach the first floor.
“The verandah is covered with an iron net which the thieves must have cut to gain access into the building. We have spotted a cut mark on the net,” said an officer working on the case.
“We have launched a search and hope to find the tridents soon,” said deputy commissioner Sen.
A Mission source said the brass tridents were installed while the building was being renovated. The centre, unveiled in September 2004, houses a shrine, meditation hall, museum, textbook library, research centre and a centre for rural and slum development.