Days after the UK confirmed that they would not be returning the Kohinoor diamond to India, an Indian government source has said that the subcontinent is seeking alternative ways for the return of the diamond. The Kohinoor was taken by the East India Company from Punjab in 1849, during British rule in India, and now forms part of the British Crown Jewels.
During a three-day visit to India last week, Alok Sharma, UK's new Asia and Pacific Minister, said that there was no legal grounds for India's claim and confirmed that the diamond would stay where it was. However, a senior government source told The Times of India that the Indian government is continuing to make efforts for the diamond's return.
The senior government source said on 1 August: "The government is considering both diplomatic, as well as legal channels to get back the diamond. If India is able to get back the diamond through diplomatic efforts, then it would not go for the legal channel. But if that does not fructify, then the government will explore [the] legal option."
India has long attempted to reclaim the Kohinoor diamond from the British, along with other treasures that were taken from the country during the British Empire. In November, a group of Bollywood actors and Indian businessmen started the process of carrying out legal proceedings in London's High Court to demand the return of the diamond to India, while Labour MP Leith Vaz has also backed calls for the diamond to be returned.
However, Indians aren't the only ones seeking to establish their right to reclaim the diamond. In December 2015, a Pakistani lawyer filed a court petition seeking the return of the diamond to Pakistan on the grounds that it was taken from Pakistan's Punjab province.
Meanwhile, the Sikh community has also claimed the Kohinoor on the grounds that by the time Punjab was annexed by the British, Anglo-Sikh treaties existed. The Sikh Federation UK has noted that the future of the Kohinoor is "a matter between Britain and the international Sikh community," and that it shouldn't be returned to India or Pakistan.