There is no other country in the world where people revere
diamonds and gemstones in the same way as they do in India. In India, a stone
is not just a pretty colored mineral, it is a powerful talisman, a connection
to the higher powers of the universe; some stones even emit healing energies.
At birth, many children in India are assigned a gem that is especially tuned to
them based on ancient Hindu astrology and traditions. That gem is to be worn,
preferably touching the skin, throughout their lives. With that kind of deep
cultural imperative surrounding gems, it is no wonder that the karma of India
has manifested in the country becoming the world’s major center for cutting and
polishing diamonds. India has an astounding number of diamond cutters,
estimated at around 700,000 strong, who take the smallest rough and turn it
into sparkling melee. According to the Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion
Council (GJEPC), 90 percent of all the world’s diamonds are cut in India and
61.8 million carats of cut and polished diamonds were exported from India in
2011. In addition to the millions of carats of diamonds cut in India, the
country also has a thriving jewelry manufacturing business — the GJEPC
estimates that there are about 2,500 Indian diamond and jewelry exporters
around the world. Beyond the commercial jewelers, there are numerous artisan
jewelers from India who draw upon their heritage to create fabulous jewelry
with an old-world sensibility that merges with modern style. Throughout its
history, India has provided the world with amazing gems and jewelry and, with
its place of leadership in the international diamond community, it continues to
do so today.
Article from the Rapaport Magazine - August 2012. To subscribe click here.