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The jewellers of Jaipur’s Johari Bazaar – a photo essay

Unesco has named the capital of Rajasthan, India, a world heritage site, partly for its jewellery and artisanal traditions, which continue to thrive on one of its main commercial streets

‘Sir, want precious stones?” a man asks me, quietly. I am on the Johari Bazaar, one of Jaipur’s most notable thoroughfares, a straight colonnade screened above by the facades of adjoining houses. Everything is painted orange, terracotta and burnt pink. The man wears white shalwar kameez, and an air of indifference. He unfolds white paper, revealing colourful stones. “Emeralds, sapphires, rubies …” he says. He is among one of several groups of men gathered in this area; they’re local dealers, discussing prices. The avenue, whose name means gem shop road, is lined with dozens of shops displaying magnificent necklaces, bracelets and rings.

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