New Delhi: UPA Chairperson and President of Indian National Congress, Sonia Gandhi Wednesday praised former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi for an innate sense of fashion and simplicity, saying her elegance was admired all over the world.
Speaking as the Chief Guest at the Convocation Ceremony of the National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) in Rae Bareli, Gandhi recalled that NIFT was conceived during the tenure of Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and remembered the personal initiative of the late Prime Minister for the establishment of the institution.
She praised the social outreach programme conducted by the institute for the traditional handloom weavers and expressed hope that the young fashion designer will create their own idioms of Indian beauty and identity in the designs of the 21st century.
"Fashion does not mean opulence," she asserted giving an example of Indira Gandhi's fashion statements.
Present at the occasion was Union Minister for Commerce, Industry and Textiles Anand Sharma who stated that with the recent policy initiatives and arrival of brands like Zara, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, new flavours will be added to the Indian luxury market which will not only give consumers a better choice but also throw open a plethora of opportunities to our young designers for better industry placement in top notch international MNCs.
Speaking as the Guest of Honour Sharma said, "The young fashion designers strive for gaining credibility for Indian brands made by Indian people."
Sharma said that the government is committed to invest in the institution building and invest in the young generation. He expressed hope that the young designers will enrich the traditional Indian textiles and will work in close contact with the traditional artisans.
"New technology has created new stresses for the traditional artisans, there is a need to create new opportunities for them," he added.
The UPA Chairperson gave away the degrees to 59 new graduates. This was second batch passing out of the institute. She also laid the foundation of the New Building for NIFT Rae Bareli.
Secretary Textiles Kiran Dhingra and President NIFT, Venu Srinivasan also addressed the gathering.
Director NIFT Rae Bareli A K Khare presented the academic report and DG NIFT P K Gera was also present.
Earlier in the day Gandhi and Sharma visited the Rae Bareli campus of the Footwear Design and Development Institute and interacted with the faculty and students.
She also visited coach factory at Lalganj and waved the green flag for the release of new modern coaches.
She also laid foundation for the doubling of railway line from Uttaratiya to Rae Bareli. She also distributed job cards for one member of the families who gave land for the project.