Citizens' Issues
Modi spreads desi flavour with sartorial choices in Britain
 Kurtas with Nehru jackets, contrasting shawls, bandhgalas and overcoats -- Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been making style statements one after the other on his Britain visit. And he has got his fashion quotient spot on, say designers.
 
Whether it was his black overcoat that he flaunted when he landed in London, or the black ensemble with an eye-catching black and white polka-dotted pocket square -- Modi's sartorial choices have been subtle but interesting.
 
Designer Gautam Gupta, who found his looks to be "classic", told IANS: "I guess he downplayed a little bit after seeing too much focus on his clothes and the overhype. I liked what he is wearing (during his visit) and he is looking like a statesman."
 
At Chequers, he went beige with a warm stole in a slightly deeper neutral hue.
 
When Modi stepped out to address the British Parliament, he looked suave in a black bandhgala suit, and you couldn't miss the polka-dotted accessory on him. It suggested he's with the times when it comes to fashion.
 
According to designer Varija Bajaj, it's impressive that Modi "managed to create a perfect balance of traditional bandhgala with a (contemporary) polka dot handkerchief."
 
"Mr. Modi is a brilliant speaker and popular with communities abroad owing to his extensive visits to address our foreign nationals. He has been looked upon as a symbol of progressive growth... therefore it becomes hard for him to be under a scanner everytime where he is judged to be progressive, yet rooted," Bajaj told IANS.
 
For his meeting with the Queen at the Buckingham Palace, Modi chose to go desi in a clean-cut cream kurta and churidar teamed with a maroon-coloured evergreen Nehru jacket -- which, well, if one goes by the present times, has been 'Modified'.
 
Even for his grand, almost rockstar appearance at the Wembley Stadium, where he faced an audience of almost 60,000, Modi kept his look subtle. He wore a kurta churidar again, and teamed it with a bluish black bandhgala and teamed it with a contrasting textured shawl.
 
Fashion designer Samant Chauhan said that Modi has "played it safe" with his fashion on this visit.
 
All in all, he has been promoting the traditional Indian way of dressing. So enthused was British Prime Minister David Cameron's wife Samantha that even she flaunted a sequinned sari for Modi's Wembley Stadium address.
 
Modi has also spread the magic of Indian weaves by gifting pashmina shawls and tanchoi stoles among other things to the high-profile names that he has been meeting.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Electricity for 18,000 villages in 1,000 days: Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said that 18,000 villages in India that are not connected with electricity will get this basic facility within the next 1,000 days.
 
The pace and direction of progress in India is such that the fruits of development will be seen very soon,” Modi said in Hindi in his much-awaited address to 60,000 British Indians at the iconic Wembley Stadium here.
 
“As many as 18,000 villages need electricity. There are not even electricity poles. In the next 1,000 days we will ensure they get it,” he said on the second day of his three-day visit to Britain.
 
He said that there were places in India where there was electricity but not for 24 hours a day.
 
The Indian prime minister said that by the year 2019, the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, he would ensure that there was 24 hours of electricity all over the country.
 
“We will harness solar, wind and renewable energy. We will generate 175 gigawatts of power one day,” he said. 
 
Earlier, British Prime Cameron and his wife Samantha, dressed in a sari, welcomed Modi as he arrived at Wembley Stadium.
 
After Modi met with organisers of the much-hyped event, the two leaders interacted with a group of schoolchildren of Indian origin who had performed in the cultural extravaganza that preceded Modi's speech.
 
Britain is home to a 1.5 million-strong Indian diaspora.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Modi woos diaspora at Wembley, says India's diversity is its strength
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said that diversity was India's strength as he urged the country's diaspora to become integral part of its growth story and dispelled concerns highlighted in media over some incidents intolerance in the country, saying that "there is a very deep and best India outside TV screen"
 
Addressing a huge, enthusiastic gathering of British Indians at the expansive Wembley Stadium here, Modi announced resumption of a direct flight between London and Ahmedabad, simplification of the process concerning Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) card and measures taken towards electronic travel authorisation and e-migration portal.
 
British Prime Minister David Cameron, who was present at the stadium, described it "a historic day" and said it was biggest gathering of Indian diaspora.
 
Modi, who spoke for over an hour, talked of his government's plans to launch railway rupee bond in London and raised slogan "James Bond, Brooke Bond and Rupee Bond" to loud cheers from the gathering.
 
Modi, who has faced questions over intolerance from the media during his visit to the United Kingdom, said India was a land of diversity. "Diversity is its pride and its strength," he said.
 
Towards the end of his speech, Modi recalled work of Imran Khan, a resident of Alwar in Rajasthan who has developed over 50 mobile applications related to education and dedicated them to students.
 
"My India is in Imran Khan of Alwar," Modi said. He said leaders of the world ask him with some amazement how there is so much harmony in a diverse and big country like India.
 
Referring to the work of his government in the past 18 months, Modi said India's stature had risen in the world and said the diaspora must also be experiencing it.
 
"This change is the sign of India's success. Today when India talks, it does from a position of equality," he said.
 
"India is moving on the path of development at a fast pace. I can tell you that the speed which India has taken, the direction it has taken, results will be evident soon," Modi said.
 
Modi took out his watch and demonstrated that if it is seen upright it shows London time and if it is reversed it shows the time in India.
 
"There is no other two countries with such equation. Till the time there is sun and moon, the relations between India and England will continue to gain strength. We will cross new frontiers of development," Modi said.
 
Modi thanked people for "outpouring their affections" and said India will not judge its diaspora by the colour of their passport.
 
"You have as much right on India as I have," Modi said and asked them to renew their links with the country as their dreams will be fulfilled.
 
Referring to the challenges of terrorism and global warming faced by the world, Modi said life of Mahatma Gandhi showed solution to these problems and India can show the right path.
 
He also referred to Sufi tradition and said its greater spread would have helped check terrorism.
 
Modi said while his government wanted FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) in many sectors, for him FDI conveyed First Develop India.
 
Referring to increase in FDI flows, he said, "The world's confidence in India was rising. That is our biggest strength. We want to move ahead with that."
 
Referering to his proposal to launch a global solar alliance later this month in Paris, he said there were 102 countries which have harness solar energy. "India can lead in this," he said.
 
Modi said he wanted to make a "Clean India" and provide round the clock power to all by 2019, which is 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
 
Modi referred to his humble origins as tea seller and recalled his push towards fighting female infanticide and financial inclusion.
 
Modi told the gathering that India has no reason to be poor took digs at the previous governments over corruption and their inability to remove poverty and said 18,000 villages in India were still without electricity.
 
"I do not why there is a habit to see that it stays," he said.
 
Referring to India having 800 million people below 35 years, he said "a country which has so many youth cannot stay behind".
 
Modi said India's rankings had improved in ease of doing business and in fighting corruption.
 
Without going into specifics, Modi said he had heard problems raised by Sikh leaders who met him and was working towards addressing them.
 
People intermittently shouted "Modi, Modi" as the prime minister delivered the speech.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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