In a rare gesture, Russian ambassador to India Alexander M Kadakin on Thursday broke away from diplomatic protocol and touched the feet of BJP veteran LK Advani while visiting the leader to wish him on his 85th birthday.
Kadakin was one of the first visitors to reach Advani's residence this morning to greet him on his birthday. Advani received him in the portico of his bungalow.
Soon after alighting from his car, Kadakin presented Advani with a bouquet. He then bent down to touch Advani's feet to seek his blessings.
Such a gesture is virtually unheard of in diplomatic circles as most diplomats and heads of state or government only go to the extent of folding their hands in a 'namaste' to wish an Indian leader. Shaking of hands is the norm in such meetings.
The two were engaged in an animated conversation in Advani's sitting room. The envoy also presented Advani a small Ganesh idol.
Kadakin, an Indophile, conversed in chaste Hindi with Advani throughout his visit at the Prithviraj Road-residence.