Gee I don’t know? Should I be arrested if I took some of the Queen’s sh*t?
A similar and equally ridiculous question was asked in a British newspaper related to the jewel and other artifacts stolen from the Subcontinent (now India, Pakistan and Bangladesh). It was about Koh-i-Noor; The Indian jewel in the Queen’s crown. It was confiscated from Kharak Singh in 1850 by the British East India Company and became part of the British Crown Jewels when Queen Victoria was proclaimed Empress of India in 1877. In simple words, Imperialist Britain stole it from the Subcontinent and never gave it back.
This is why I laugh real loud when folks from Europe or even USA tell me people from the “third world” are thieves and corrupt individuals. Last time I checked it was the fancy First World Folks sneaking in our lands, stealing our prized possessions and then having the shameless gall to ask if it should be returned but never returning what they stole.
Maharaja Ranjit Singh was crowned ruler of Punjab and willed the Koh-i-noor to the Jagannath Temple in Orissa from his deathbed in 1839. But after his death the British administrators did not execute his will. On 29 March 1849, the British raised their flag on the citadel of Lahore and the Punjab was formally proclaimed to be part of the British Empire in India. One of the terms of the Treaty of Lahore, the legal agreement formalising this occupation, was as follows –
The gem called the Koh-i-Noor which was taken from Shah Shuja-ul-Mulk by Maharajah Ranjit Singh shall be surrendered by the Maharajah of Lahore to the Queen of England.