To avoid criticism and escalate diplomatic tension, Queen Camila will not be crowned with the diamond claimed by India (AFP)

A little less than three months after the coronation of King Charles III and the queen consort Camillahe Buckingham Palace announced, in the last hours, another change concerning the ceremony. Since planning began, the event has undergone changes in traditions imposed by the royal family as the new monarch seeks to avoid criticism and bring the monarchy into step with the modern world.

The most recent change, however, is to the queen. On this occasion, Camila will wear a different crown from that used by her predecessor, Isabella IIin 1937 in order to avoid a conflict with the India. This piece has the particularity of having encrusted one of the most famous diamonds in history and one of the most disputed: the Koh-i-Noor.

This jewel – whose translation means “mountain of light” – was taken from an 11-year-old Indian prince in the 1840s to be given to Queen Victoria. From that moment, the diamond of 105.6 carats -and one of the most sculpted in the world- was one of the traditional jewelery of the british monarchy as well as a constant memory of the flight to the Asian country.

The Koh-i-Noor is one of the most famous diamonds in history and one of the most disputed (Getty Images)
The Koh-i-Noor is one of the most famous diamonds in history and one of the most disputed (Getty Images)

“Koh-i-Noor is a real, serious flashpoint,” he said. Lauren Kiehnawriter and historian of royal jewelry, on her blog Court Jeweleradding that “Carlos and Camila would like to avoid further criticism where possible and Carlos, in particular, has always seemed sensitive to the fact that jewelry can convey significant symbolism.” “Camila’s coronation and the wearing of the Koh-i-Noor crown jewel bring back painful memories of the colonial past”said a spokesman for Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi’s political party at the The telegraph of the day.

That’s why this Tuesday from Buckingham they assured that Camila will use a crown that belonged to Queen Marywho held his role between 1910 and 1936. According to the Palace announcement, the choice by “His Majesty” was based on Economic problems and not cultural. “This is the first time in recent history that an existing crown will be used for a spouse’s coronation instead of creating a new one in the interests of durability and efficiency.“, they argued without mentioning the disputed diamond.

In this way, the authorities put an end to the rumors that, since last September after the death of Elizabeth II, had arisen around the possibility that the Koh-i-Noor would be present at another coronation. After hearing the news, the palace added that Queen Mary’s crown had already been removed from the Tower of London – where all the royal jewels are stored – to be restored with three cullinan diamonds. These are smaller gemstones quarried from a stone in South Africa and are part of the late Queen’s collection which she usually used as brooches.

Camila will use a Queen Mary crown to avoid rekindling the controversy with India
Camila will use a Queen Mary crown to avoid rekindling the controversy with India

Despite the fact that King Charles wants to avoid rekindling tensions with India, the claim to this diamond dates back many years and it will hardly be resolved with such actions. In the past, the governments of the Asian country have pushed for the jewel to be returned and, it is even known that visitors to the country and from Pakistan they dream of steal the coin from its place in the tower -something to which the prime minister David Cameron responded in 2010 by assuring that this “mountain of light” would stay in the UK-.

Buckingham Palace’s announcement comes at a delicate time in relations between the two countries, as it has been learned in recent weeks that India has overtaken the UK as the world’s fifth largest economy, just as negotiations are underway for a trade deal that aspires to materialize this year.

Added to this is the documentary that the BBC published on the role of the prime minister Narendra Modi in the violent protests in Gujarat in 2002, which Indian authorities called “hostile propaganda” and for which they even raided media offices in the country.

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