Rainbow colours will be on display at the Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University (BBAU) convocation on January 22 when dignitaries, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and students will don Indian dresses instead of colonial robes.
The Prime Minister will wear a golden yellow ‘achkan’ of ‘50-inch chest size’ (not 56 inch) over a bulletproof jacket. The khadi and handloom ‘achkan’ has been stitched by a Delhi tailor, a source said.
The university got to know about the PM’s chest size from the PMO and then got the ‘achkan’ stitched. A stole for the PM has been arranged in Lucknow itself.
On the convocation day there will be seven VVIPs on the dais wearing ‘achkans’ and stoles of different colours.
Chancellor NL Lalkhanpal will wear a maroon ‘achkan’ while vice chancellor RC Sobti’s ‘achkan’ will be of ‘purple-pink’ colour.
Other dignitaries, including union home minister Rajnath Singh and mayor Dinesh Sharma will wear light peach colour ‘achkans’.
Since the university wants to make this maiden visit of the PM memorable for one and all, the vice chancellor is taking personal interest in selecting the dresses and their colours. Of the 600 post-graduate students, boys will wear kurta-pyjama with navy blue stole and girls cream coloured churidar pyjamakurta. There will also be 82 researchers wearing maroon coloured stoles.
The university had done away with the colonial convocation gowns last year itself.
The change in the dress code was effected when former President late APJ Abdul Kalam, in October 2010, opposed use of ceremonial gowns and caps at convocations. He had then said: “This cap and gown should go because it reminds us of the British Raj.” The Missile Man had pitched for an indigenous dress with Lucknow’s famous Chikankari.
Speaking to HT, Sobti said, “I tried for chikan kurta but somehow could not decide on it this time.”