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March 9, 2019

Military saris in vogue in India

Top Story

March 9, 2019

SURAT: Indian sari manufacturers are cashing in on a wave of patriotism over a dispute with Pakistan to create military-emblazoned versions of the traditional woman's drape.

Inside a smoky factory in the western city of Surat, machines run 24 hours a day to churn out fabrics showing jets and the face of an air force pilot shot down in a dogfight with Pakistan. At Annapurna Industries, workers toil in three shifts to meet demand for saris, which retail at around 850 rupees (£9.19).

One version features Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, the moustachioed pilot who crash-landed in Pakistan-controlled territory, becoming the face of the conflict. Another manufacturer, Jamkudi Sarees, has prepared five new designs to meet the high demand. These are detailed, if exaggerated, depictions of warplanes flying into Pakistan.

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