NEW DELHI, July 29, 2010 (AFP) – The real jewel in Britain’s actual crown will not be returning to India, Prime Minister David Cameron said Thursday, as he ruled out any repatriation of the famed Kohinoor diamond. The 105 carat gemstone set in the coronation crown of the British royals was mined in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.
It was seized by the East India Company and became part of the British Crown Jewels when Queen Victoria was proclaimed Empress of India in 1877.
India has made regular requests for its return, but in an interview during his two-day visit to India, Cameron made clear that the diamond was going nowhere.
“What tends to happen with these questions is that if you say yes to one, then you would suddenly find the British Museum empty,” he told the local NDTV news channel.
“I know there is a great argument about the original provenance of the Kohinoor diamond, but I am afraid to say it’s going to stay put,” he added.