U.S. hands over 105 antiquities to India following agreement
The countries had agreed to work towards preventing illegal trafficking of cultural artefacts during P.M’s state visit to the U.S. last month.
The United States on Monday handed over 105 trafficked antiquities to India.
India and the U.S. have also agreed to work for a Cultural Property Agreement that would help prevent illegal trafficking of cultural artefacts in future.
“For the people of India, these were not just pieces of art but part of their living heritage and culture”.
From across India
The 105 artefacts represent a wide geographical spread in terms of their origin in India – with 47 from eastern India, 27 from southern India, 22 from central India, six from northernIndia and three from western India.
Spanning a period from 2nd-3rd century CE to 18th-19th century CE, the artefacts are made of terracotta, stone, metal and wood. Around 50 of them have religious significance.
16 artefacts were handed over by the U.S. side while in 2021, the U.S. government handed over 157. In 2022, the U.S. authorities formally handed over 307 antiquities, estimated to be worth nearly $4 million to Indian officials.
These antiquities of Indian origin had reached the international market through right or wrong paths, but America’s decision to return them to India shows the emotional bond between the two nations”.