54 leaders to be attired in churidar kurta in India-Africa Forum Summit

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The ministry of external affairs (MEA) has been kept occupied with a seamless stitch and fine tailoring as it prepares to host the third edition of the India-Africa Forum Summit in New Delhi from October 26 to 29.

The ministry sought the “measurements” of their heads of state so that the photo-op makes for a united style statement— half-sleeved kurta and a churidar pyjama—of the 54 leaders with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“The idea has been approved by the PMO and the communications to embassies and consulate officers have been sent accordingly. This will be one of the summit’s highlights and will help the African countries have a unifying partnership with India,” a ministry official said.

There have been no objections from any African country. “There have been a few queries and those have been answered satisfactorily,” said the official. “The PMO and the MEA believe the sewing machine is more than just a tool for mending clothes. It is a tool which helps people feel comfortable around each other. Stitch by stitch, the fabric of relationship between countries can also be repaired and strengthened,” said the official.

At the dinner hosted by the Prime Minister for the African leaders, the focus will be on the cultural heritage of the country, with a emphasis on the North-East. The third edition of the India-Africa Forum Summit, held in consultation with the African Union Commission, will see a meeting between foreign ministers on October 27, followed by the arrival of heads of various African countries the next day.

The first summit was held in 2008 in India, while the second was held in 2011 in Addis Ababa. The summit will focus on India’s engagement with Africa in terms of cooperation, trade and capacity building.

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