The University Grants Commission (UGC) has released a circular advocating the use of khadi or handloom textiles in over 50,000 universities and colleges for ceremonial dresses, like convocations. 

Citing Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the UGC has advocated the usage of khadi or handloom textiles in ceremonial dresses. The circular addressed to over 50,000 universities and colleges, states, “The honourable Prime Minister has advocated the use of khadi and also emphasized on the revival of handlooms. Mahatma Gandhi used khadi, a handspun and handloom cloth as a weapon during the struggle for Independence, and hence it is also known as ‘Liveries of Freedom’…the use of khadi and other handlooms will not only give a sense of pride of being Indian, but also be more comfortable in hot and humid weather.”

The erstwhile ‘Western’ attire of convocations has long been a discourse over the loss of Indian-ness, thus, a few institutions such as Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras, IIT Bombay, National Institute of Technology (NIT) Hamirpur, and Gujarat University have already adopted khadi or handloom textiles as their ceremonial dress. 

Signed by UGC secretary Rajnish Jain, the circular aims to preserve the Indian culture and heritage and sustain the livelihood for lakhs of rural people. “I request you to kindly take appropriate action to adopt khadi and/or handloom fabric for ceremonial dresses to encourage the use of khadi…,” reads the circular.

As quoted to Hindustan Times, a Delhi University professor, maintaining anonymity, said, “The language of the circular is very interesting. While it did not use the word mandatory, it expects universities to take action. We are not against khadi or handloom but I believe universities and colleges need to be left alone to make a decision on what they wish to adopt. It is an indirect directive to fall in line. It’s symbolism, not Indian pride, that the education regulator is trying to get us to believe.”


Feature Image Credits: The New Leam


Anandi Sen 

[email protected] 

All that is old is gold; this holds true in the case of khadi which is, the clothing material that played a massive role in the struggle for Independence.

“Swaraj cannot come through the machine. But if two hundred million people with full understanding produce khadi with their own labour and wear it, the face of India will be transformed,” Gandhi ji’s courageous confidence in khadi was one of his most articulated convictions, and when he said that wearing khadi can change the spirit of India, he was right. He proved himself by making khadi the synonym of swadeshi.

The humble khadi clothing has now transformed itself into a style quotient. To change is to live, and to adapt is to grow; which is absolutely true in the growth trend of the humble khadi. Khadi not only can be produced in variable counts and weights, making it suitable for all weathers, but it is also eco-friendly, and has a low carbon footprint as compared to other types of cloth. Here is how you can style it to make a statement:

Outdoorsy Kurtas

Outdoorsy kurtas can be sported with either a pair of denims, or pyjamas. For footwear, settle on a couple of Kolhapuri chappals that will loan you an ethnic yet contemporary look, which works everytime.

Image Credits: Jaypore
Image Credits: Jaypore

Pastel-coloured Khadi Shirts

Light coloured khadi shirt teamed up with linen bottoms, chinos, or simply denim will surely add to your personality. Furthermore, khadi shirts are moistureabsorbent and skin-friendly, ensuring allround comfort. A sleek look would be to style an oversized shirt, cinched with a statement belt at the waist, paired with comfortable leggings.

Image Credits: I Wear Khadi
Image Credits: I Wear Khadi

Nehru Jacket

The Nehru jacket, paired with a white kurta and pyjama, or with a shirt and trousers, is the go-to for a more casual but effective look. Printed versions add a unique flare to the outfit.

Image Credits:
Image Credits: India Mart

Khadi Sarees

For job interviews or professional settings, a khadi saree is the go-to for a look that is easy to carry yet makes an impact. A range of fabrics from pure khadi to silk khadi, offer a wide range of options.

Image Credits: The Loom
Image Credits: The Loom

One of the biggest khadi exclusive stores in Delhi is in Connaught Place’s Outer Circle, which offers a wide range of products. So, get out there and explore your options with the versatile, comfortable, homegrown and sustainable fabric of khadi!

Image Credits:
Image Credits: Magic Pin

Feature Image Credits: Aakarsh Mathur for DU Beat

Abhinandan Kaul

[email protected]

Bhavya Pandey

[email protected]