Although a large part of the westernized world has been mourning the death of Queen Elizabeth, things have been a little different in South Asia. A large section of the population from England’s former colonies has raised questions about the legacy. They have also dissented about how the British empire has been hoarding diamonds worth $800 million as a part of the crown jewels. The moment the world came to know about the passing of Queen Elizabeth, South Asian voices began to rise. Most of them Tweeted that they should be receiving the diamond. The 109-carat- diamond has been at the center of several controversies that involve the former colonies and the British royalty.
The Kohinoor diamond has been the jewel of the British crown. Historians believe it symbolizes how India was the crown jewel of the British empire. The diamond is worth around $400 million and symbolizes the Indian protests that the British Empire had crushed during their reign. It is the embodiment of 200 years of rule and oppression, and the looting of millions of resources. The Kohinoor diamond has an auspicious reputation of bringing good fortune to women- but bad luck to men. And this is why generations of British queens have worn it. Queen Elizabeth wore it in her crown, and it is now currently on display at the Tower of London. With the coronation of King Charles, his wife Camilla would be wearing it on her crown.
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The British Empire’s “Loot” Consists Of Innumerable Famous Jewels
The Kohinoor diamond was a part of the Indian mainland until 1849 when the British empire conquered Punjab. Soon, it became a part of the British East India company. In July 1850, Queen Victoria received it. The British jewelers reshaped the diamond into the size of a crown jewel. Furthermore, Queen Victoria wore it until her death in 1901. In her will, she had decreed that only a female monarch would wear it. If not a monarch, then the wife of the head of the state.
The South Asian countries- India, Afghanistan, Pakistan- and Iran, have all contested the possession of Kohinoor. In their opinion, the British Empire looted them from the countries. This does come as a counterpoint to the British royalty’s claim of them being ‘gifts’. The website of the Tower of London states, “The Crown Jewels, part of the Royal Collection, are the most powerful symbols of the British Monarchy and hold deep religious and cultural significance in our nation’s history.”
@viceworldnews Former colonies claim the 109-carat Koh-i-Noor diamond, which is part of the British Crown Jewels and was on the Queen Mother’s crown, was stolen from them. #queenelizabethII #queenelizabeth #crownjewels #kohinoor #queen #uk #royal #royalfamily #royals #monarchy ♬ original sound – VICE World News
On the other hand, Shashi Tharoor, an Indian politician and the former foreign minister of India, stated, “Instead of returning plundered patrimony to its rightful owners, the British are clinging to stolen artifacts such as the Kohinoor diamond, which they embedded in the Queen Mother’s tiara and shamelessly flaunt in the Tower of London.” 
The tweet from the Africa Archives states, “Queen Elizabeth II owns the largest clear-cut diamond in the world known as the Great Star of Africa. The 530-carat gem was mined in South Africa back in 1905. It was stolen from South Africa. It has an estimated worth of $400 million. The British claim that it was given to them as a symbol of friendship and peace yet it was during colonialism. The British then replaced the name ‘The Great Star of Africa’ with the name of Chairman of Mine ‘Thomas Cullinan’.”
Keep Reading: Here’s Exactly What’s What Happened When The Queen Past Away
- “Former Colonies of Elizabeth II Want Their $400 Million Diamond Back From the Crown Jewels.” VICE. Pallavi Pundir. September 9, 2022.
- “Former colonies of the British Empire want diamonds worth $800 million back from the Crown Jewels.” Unilad. Poppy Bilderbeck. September 109, 2022.