From a persona non grata to a new fashion icon — that's how a stunning election victory has transformed Narendra Modi in the eyes of the American media as Washington prepares to welcome India's new PM, possibly in September.
As if on cue, three major US publications — Time, New York Times and the Washington Post — have all written about his trademark 'Modi Kurta' as they try to "decode India's new leader" ahead of his September summit with President Barack Obama.
"India's New Prime Minister Is the Country's Latest Fashion Icon," says Time suggesting "With his shortened tunic, or 'Modi Kurta,' Narendra Modi is becoming as celebrated for his style sense as he is notorious for his controversial political past."
The New York Times sees in "Narendra Modi: A Leader Who Is What He Wears" saying "Even by the standards of a world...the image-craft of India's new Prime Minister, Narendra Modi - and its fashion fallout - has been something of a case study."
"Indeed, even by the standards of India itself, where leaders have perhaps understood the use of clothing as a communication device better and longer than any of their international peers ...Modi stands out. Literally and strategically," says Time.
"Objectively speaking, the Modi Kurta itself does not exactly represent an extraordinary aesthetic advance; rather it symbolizes a set of values. And therein lies its allure," it adds.
Probing "what Narendra Modi's fashion says about his politics," the Washington Post says: "Move aside, Michelle Obama. The world has a new fashion icon.
"And no, it's not Vladimir Putin, despite his fitness regimen — it's India's new Prime Minister, Narendra Modi."
"Countless articles have been written about his look, from his vast collection of hats to his iconic long tunic, the #ModiKurta. Yes, it has its own hashtag," it notes.