SGPC today slammed the central government over its stand that Kohinoor diamond was neither “forcibly taken” nor “stolen” by British rulers and demanded its return to the religious body, saying it “belongs to the Sikh community”.
SGPC President Avtar Singh Makkar said his organisation has strong objection and disagrees with the stand of the Union Culture Ministry presented in the Supreme Court yesterday.
“The SGPC strongly condemns this stand taken by the Ministry in the top court of the country,” he said.
Makkar said as per history, in 1849 British Government was having control over the Lahore Palace “and that time Lord Dalhousie had forcibly snatched the Kohinoor from teenaged Maharaja Daleep Singh along with others valuable articles.”
The SGPC chief claimed that Kohinoor belonged to Sikh community.
“The Sikh community has right over it and the union government should not create hurdle for SGPC in getting it back from Britshers. Rather our government should extend all possible help to get back Kohinoor along with other gold articles,” he said here.
Yesterday, the government told the Supreme Court that Kohinoor diamond was neither “forcibly taken” nor “stolen” by British rulers but had been given to the East India Company by the rulers of Punjab.
“Kohinoor cannot said to be forcibly taken or stolen as it was given by the successors of Maharaja Ranjit Singh to East India Company in 1849 as compensation for helping them in the Sikh wars,” Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar told a bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur.