Tirupati: Does the “Raj Pink’’, the largest fancy intense pink diamond in the world, which failed to go under the hammer in Geneva last November, actually belong to Tirumala Tirupati Devastanam (TTD)?
The Raj Pink, the rare 37.3 carat stone, was the highlight of the Sotheby’s sale of precious jewels. Lord Venkateswara temple chief priest Ramana Deekshitulu, who has been served notice to leave, on Friday alleged that it belonged to the temple, and wanted a thorough enquiry into the missing jewels at TTD.
He said that the Mysore Maharaja had donated the platinum necklace studded with pink diamond, the rarest of the rare variety of diamonds. He recalled adorning the jewel on the Balaji idol till 2001. He said the Chief Vigilance Officer, an IPS officer, had recorded the missing pink diamond in the registers as broken due to throwing of coins at the idol by devotees. The chief priest expressed surprised at how a broken piece was found in the inventory held by an international auction house.