Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday hosted lunch for Prince William and Kate Middleton, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who are on a visit to India.
Modi welcomed Prince William and wife Kate on the steps of Hyderabad House, once a princely residence designed by British architect Sir Edwin Lutyens. Kate wore a knee-length light blue dress, William a dark suit and tie, while Modi appeared in a traditional white kurta and cream waistcoat.
“A royal summer in Delhi! PM @narendramodi receives the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at Hyderabad House,” external affairs ministry spokesman Vikas Swarup tweeted along with pictures of Modi with Prince William and Kate.
Sources said the four-course lunch featured Indian “veg” and “non-veg” cuisine but, citing protocol, declined to specify the dishes served. Renowned Indian classical musician Rahul Sharma played the santoor rounding off his performance with the Beatles classic “Let It Be”.
During his visit to Britain in November last year, Modi was hosted to a lunch banquet by Queen Elizabeth II.
The royal couple, who arrived in Mumbai on Sunday, attended a reception hosted by the British high commissioner in Delhi on Monday night to mark Queen Elizabeth II’s 90th birthday that falls next week.
William and Kate wielded a sword at the to cut a cake for the Queen. After paying tribute to his grandmother as “an energetic and dedicated guiding force for her family”, William read a message to the Indian people from the Queen.
Striking a lighter note, he concluded: “Now I can report back to Granny that I have done my duty!”
The couple have spent much of their three days in India meeting children and charities that work with them. On Tuesday, they visited a shelter of the Salaam Baalak Trust that provides support and shelter for street kids in Delhi and Mumbai.
But there’s been glamour too, with A-list Bollywood film stars led by Shah Rukh Khan and former Miss World Aishwarya Rai turning out on Sunday night for a charity gala in Mumbai.
The week-long tour will take the royal couple to see the famed one-horned rhinos in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park, on to the isolated kingdom of Bhutan before returning to India on Saturday to visit the Taj Mahal.
(With inputs from IANS and AP.)