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India asks U.K. to return 'cursed' gem

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by Archived_Member16, Jun 3, 2010.

  1. Archived_Member16

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    Jan 7, 2005
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    India asks U.K. to return 'cursed' gem

    Government joins UN campaign to help get back the Koh-i-noor Diamond

    By Dean Nelson, Daily Telegraph - June 3, 2010

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    The gem has been in British possession since East India Company forces defeated the Maharaja of Punjab in 1849 and forced him to hand it over to Queen Victoria as part of the Treaty of Lahore.

    It was last worn in public by the late Queen Mother and last seen set inside the Maltese Cross atop her coffin. India claims the diamond was illegally acquired and wants it returned with other treasures.

    After years of unsuccessful lobbying, it has joined an international campaign backed by the United Nations for the return of treasures to several countries, including Mexico, Greece, Turkey and Egypt.

    A spokesman for the British High Commission in New Delhi said the government rejected India's claim and said that the diamond was "legitimately acquired." Its ownership was "non-negotiable". The gemstone has been worn only by female members of the Royal Family because it is said to carry a curse when owned by men.

    Legend says: "He who owns this diamond will own the world but will also know all its misfortunes. Only God or Woman can wear it with impunity."
    Wilkie Collins acknowledged its inspiration for his novel The Moonstone, the story of a young woman who inherits a diamond and the misery of its curse.

    © Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun

    source: http://www.{censored word, do not repeat.}/news/todays-paper/India+asks+return+cursed/3105865/story.html

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