India is seeking UNESCO support for an international campaign to recover its priceless antiquities that were once taken away from the country in foreign invasions, a senior official of the Archaeological Survey of India said.
"As efforts so far to reclaim stolen treasures have proved futile, UNESCO support is required for launching an international campaign to achieve the end," ASI Director General Gautam Sengupta said here.
Sengupta, who attended the Cairo conference of archaeological heads of countries last month, said India had expressed its wish to get back the stolen treasures like the exquisite Kohinoor, taken away by the British and now in the Tower of London, besides Birmingham Buddha, Amravati railings, Saraswati idol (stolen from Bhoj temple) and many other lost valuables.
He said the whereabouts of fabled Peacock throne, looted during raid by Nadir Shah and taken to Persia, were not immediately available.
"Information is that most of the precious antique items which we lost in raids, attacks or loots during foreign invasions in the pre-independence period are spread over museums, mostly in European countries," he said.