India celebrated its 68th Republic Day on Thursday, with the annual parade displaying the beauty and might of the nation at Rajpath.
Despite all the pomp and colour on the parade ground, a particularly hard-to-miss sight was that of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his sartorial choice for the occasion. Modi chose to go with monochromes – with the exception of his stand-out statement pagdi – on the special day.
Unlike the previous Republic Day when the Prime Minister wore a bandhgala suit, this time his preference for the Nehru collar came with a dotted charcoal-grey jacket featuring the trademark pocket square.
However, it was his pink woven turban lined with silver that stood apart. While Twitter had a field day decoding the reason for his choice of colour (some even calling it a tribute to the new Rs 2,000 note), design experts dubbed it as a thoughtful pick.
Designer Rahul Mishra said the turban seemed like it was made of kota silk from Rajasthan, with a silver zari border. “It’s an ultra-lightweight fabric and a style that connects with the masses. Pink proclaims a new beginning and, more importantly, inclusion and acceptance. On such a special day, his choice of turban was a great fit.”
Designer Suneet Varma voiced a similar thought. “I feel he picked his clothes carefully. Pink is the colour of festivity, of celebration and joy. It marks India’s strength, marching forward into the future. The turban is symbolic of pride, and a sign of homage and respect for the guest of honour – the crown prince of Abu Dhabi – who also wore his royal headdress,” he said.
For designer Ritu Beri, the look added colour to the special day. “I am a big fan of PM Modi’s dress sense: He has brought interesting hues to Indian menswear. Today, you see a lot more politicians following his sartorial sense. I especially liked his choice of pink turban for the parade. It really suited him, and the colour was impressively royal. In this age of khadi resurgence and minimalist fashion, his look struck the perfect chord,” she said.