Diamonds And India
India has very ancient associations with Diamonds.
The romance with diamonds started about 2000 years ago, when they were made available in India. Until 1729, diamonds came into the world only from India.
The earliest Western account referring to Diamonds is in the year 1292, by the great maritime adventurer Marco Polo.
In ancient India, the earliest reference to diamonds is in the Arthashastra by Kautilya, and was continued upto the Mughal Dynasty. To this day Diamonds remain a most potent instrument ofdesire, captivating the hearts of millions of charming women all over the world.
After 1886, Diamonds were discovered in South Africa, and other African natins. Subsequently. Diamonds were discovered in the cold climes of Russia, the aboriginal Australasia, and other parts of the world. The modern era of Diamonds began after the second World War. since 1962, it has been consumed widely by people other than Royalty, and the truly rich folks.
With the approach of the third millennium (year 2000 anno domini), the 2000 year old history of diamonds is expected to be rejuvenated.
Yet, commercially, Diamonds gained importance in the Indian economy only after 1962, the year when the first economic policy, for Diamond cutting, was announced.
In the 60's, exports of Indian Diamonds were in the region of 4 million US$ per annum.
Over the years, this amount has grown to a mind boggling 6 billion US$ involving a manpower input of more than 1 million workers.
The heart of Indian Diamond business lies in Mumbai (erstwhile Bombay), with the majority of operators situated in a cluster of buildings namely - Prasad Chambers, Panchratna et al, at Opera House, Mumbai.