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World's biggest diamond hub suffers hit in Mumbai blasts.
One of this week's deadly Mumbai blasts scattered diamonds, possibly worth millions of dollars, onto the street but has not convinced traders to abandon their hub in the heart of the city for a purpose-built diamond bourse in the suburbs.
About 60 percent of the world's diamond processing passes through the Opera House area in south Mumbai, site of the most powerful of the three coordinated blasts, which killed 18 people and injured 133 others.
Generations of merchants, mostly from the Gujarati community that also dominates Mumbai stockbroking, have developed a unique culture of security over the years, using the area's dense crowds to their advantage.
"Diamonds move from office to office unseen. People carrying them are not identified and there is security in the anonymity," said Rajiv Popley, director of Popley Group, which has a store in the main building and a retail network in India and Dubai.Traders carry the diamonds in their pockets, often rolled in tissue paper. They dress casually, blending with the thousands of commuters that pass through the nearby rail station.
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