A 400-year-old copy of the Qur’an that the police seized from a 10-member gang in Mysuru district on August 10 wasn’t stolen from a museum in Jammu and Kashmir, as suspected earlier.
A five-member team of archaeologists and police from J&K came to Mysuru on August 25 and examined the seized copy with the help of some documents it had brought along. While the calligraphy in the two copies wasn’t different, the seized reprint of the Qur’an didn’t have many details of the scripture stolen from the Shri Pratap Singh Museum in Srinagar in 2003. The experts eventually concluded that the Mysuru copy is different from the missing Qur’an, Abhinav Khare, the Mysuru SP, told reporters here on Thursday.
The seized copy of the Qur’an, however, is quite old, the experts opined. Earlier, an archaeologist from Delhi had examined the scripture in Mysuru to determine its antiquity. To a query, the SP said that though a page was missing in both the copies, they were still way different from each other.
Police in KR Nagar taluk of Mysuru district had seized the Qur’an from the gang that was trying to sell it. The suspects had claimed they had procured the antique copy from Hyderabad, but police are yet to trace it to that city.
Prof B Sheik Ali, historian and former vice-chancellors of Mangalore and Goa universities, had helped the Mysuru district police realise the antique value of the copy. He had opined that the Qur’an belonged to the first half of the 17th century during the Mughal era. Aurangzeb, then crown prince, who was known for his skills as an expert calligrapher, might have composed it, he stated.