The incident came to light when the temple priest had gone to perform pooja last evening and found the lingam, also called as ‘Suyambu lingam’ (created by God), missing and the box in which it was kept was broken, they said.
According to Archeological experts, the Emerald (Maragatham) Lingam could have been made by King Rajendra Chola from emerald stone.
It is also known for its medicinal properties, they said.
Based on a complaint, a case has been registered, police said adding, they suspect the involvement of an international gang in the theft of the Lingam.
The seventh century temple is being administered by Dharmapura Adheenam Mutt and was dedicated to Lord Shiva.
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