New Delhi/Mumbai: To stem the flow and find ways to stop trade in blood diamond also known as conflict diamond, war diamond, hot diamond or red diamond a five-day inter-sessional meeting of Kimberley Process, a joint initiative involving government, international diamond industry and civil society, is currently underway in the Maximum City Mumbai. The meeting being hosted by India this year will conclude on 21 June.
Blood diamond refers to rough diamonds used by rebel movements or their allies to finance conflict aimed at undermining legitimate governments. Itís already got a mention in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolutions.
In 1998, certain rebel movements in Africa (Sierra Leone, Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia) were selling, among other things, illegally obtained diamonds, known as conflict diamonds to fund their wars against legitimate governments.
With a view to finding ways to stop the trade in blood diamond, world’s diamond industry, United Nations, Governments and leading NGOs came together and in November 2002 at Interlaken, Switzerland, where the final draft of the Kimberley Process measures was ratified by more than 50 countries.
The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme came into effect on 1 January 2003 and evolved into an effective mechanism for stopping the trade in blood diamond.
However, around 300 delegates from the government of India and other participating countries, industry and civil society are attending the inter-sessional meeting.
Blood diamond: India & Kimberley Process Certification Scheme
India is one of the founder members of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme. The country is the chair of the Kimberley Process for the year 2019 with the Russian Federation as the vice-chair. India had earlier chaired Kimberley Process Certification Scheme in the year 2008.
Alok Vardhan Chaturvedi, directorate general of Foreign Trade, has been designated as Kimberley Process Chair 2019, and Rupa Dutta, economic adviser, Department of Commerce, is Indiaís Kimberley Process focal point.
At present, the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme has 55 members representing 82 countries including European Union with 28 members.
The Kimberley Process is chaired, on a rotating basis, by participating countries. KP vice-chair is generally elected by Kimberley Process plenary every year, who becomes the Chair in the next year.
Since 2003, India has been actively participating in the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme process and is a member of all working groups of Kimberley Process (except for working group on artisanal and alluvial production). The Department of Commerce is the nodal department and the Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council is designated as the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme importing and exporting authority in India.
The Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council is responsible for issuing Kimberley Process Certificates and is also the custodian of Kimberley Process Certificates received in the country.
The Plenary meeting of Kimberley Process is scheduled to be held in the period 11-15 November in New Delhi.