Padma awards given to renowned Kannada poet Kuvempu were stolen by unidentfied thieves who barged into a museum at his birth place Kuppalli in Shivamogga district in Karnataka on Monday night. The robbery captured on CCTV at the museum was carried out in a span of 19 minutes between 8.10 and 8.29 pm at the museum built at Kuvempu’s residence.
“The miscreants stole Kuvempu’s Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan from the museum at his residence in Kuppalli. They damaged the CCTV cameras before they committed the crime but the CCTV has managed to capture the images of the persons who entered the museum with their faces covered,” home minister G Parameshwar said.
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The Congress government in Karnataka has taken a serious view of the issue and all efforts are on to nab the accused, Parameshwar said.
Kuvempu is the pet name of Kuppalli Venkatappa Puttappa, a novelist, poet, playwright, critic and thinker. He was conferred with the Padma Bhushan award in 1958 and Padma Vibhushan in 1988.
He is the second ‘Rashtrakavi’ of Kannada. He died in 1994 and the Rashtrakavi Kuvempu Trust developed his birthplace as Kavishaila which is a major attraction for literature students in the state.