Welcoming Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mahabalipuram on Friday, PM Narendra Modi donned a traditional South Indian attire - Veshti paired with a white shirt and an 'Angavastram'. The two leaders are scheduled to hold their second informal meeting at the ancient city- 60 Km from Chennai, on October 11-12. The previous Wuhan summit has happened against the backdrop of India and China standoff on the Doklam issue in 2017. PM Modi had also tweeted a welcome in Chinese when Jinping's plane landed in Chennai airport, extending hospitality.
Tamil Nadu: Prime Minister Narendra Modi receives Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mahabalipuram. pic.twitter.com/8FZ3Z9VvZT— ANI (@ANI) October 11, 2019
PM Modi has always celebrated the vibrant culture throughout the nation with his attire. The traditional attire donned by PM Modi on Friday - 'Veshti and Angavastram' is synchronous with the local attire of the citizens of Tamil Nadu. The 'veshti', by definition, is a four-yard-long white, cotton attire for men to cover their waist-below in the south Indian states. The 'veshti' is bordered usually with a golden trimmed border on a background of red or green. It is often paired with a shorter piece of cloth, similar in design to the veshti - called the 'Angavastram' and is draped on the shoulder.
The 'veshti' has been symbolic of Tamilnadu politics. The most famous politician in the Centre, who stuck to the traditional South Indian attire is the former Union Minister P Chidambaram. Analysts state that the crisp, white 'veshti' evokes a sense of hope, respect and fear among the masses. It also often conveys to the Tamilians that the minister clad in their beloved 'veshti' is an insider, one of them at a national level.
As started by the veteran Tamil politician C N Annadurai, Tamil politicians to this date stick to the dress code of wearing Khadi 'veshtis' in the Assembly. Annadurai - the founder of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) had reportedly gone door to door carrying such Gandhian 'veshtis' to promote them in the early 1960s. DMK leaders today too stick to the humble cotton 'veshti' as opposed to the silk 'veshtis' which have been considered elitist. keeping in tradition, PM Modi too has on various occasion donned the 'Veshti' while visiting different parts of Tamil Nadu.