From Gurdas Maan to Manish Malhotra, See The Indian Stars Invited To Party at Buckingham Palace!

By amin | Comments: 0 | March 1, 2017

Last night British royalty celebrated Britain’s close ties with India by inviting a line-up of high profile celebrities, politicians, and diplomats.

The reception held at Buckingham Palace was hosted by Queen Elisabeth II and Prince Philip. Other royals in attendance included the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Prince William and Kate, Prince Edward, and Princess Eugenie (sorry ladies, no Prince Harry!).

Princess Eugenie chats with guests

So who was lucky enough to get the exclusive invite?

Spotted in attendance were Gurdas Maan, cricketer Kapil Dev, Kamal Haasan, Gopi, Manish Malhotra, violin maestro L Subramaniam, Sukshinder Shinda, Anoushka Shankar, director Gurinder Chadha, and Big Bang Theory actor Kunal Nayyar with his former Miss India wife Neha Kapur. In total 250 celebrities and leaders from India and Britain were given invites, like finance minister Arun Jaitley and India’s high commissioner YK Sinha.

Kunal Nayyar with wife Neha Kapur

“It got an email in my personal inbox and at first I thought it was one of my friends spamming me. I replied and it turned out to be real. It’s incredible,” said Kunal Nayyar. “The evening has just been overwhelming as I got to meet the Queen and to promote UK-Indian culture, which gives me so much pride. I did get to speak to the Queen and she said how nice it was to meet me again. I haven’t actually met her before so maybe she was confused or has just watched ‘The Big Bang Theory’! I just shook her hand, bowed my head, and said thank you so much for inviting us.”

Sukshinder Shinda chats with the Queen

So what’s the reception all about? Well it’s to kick off the UK-India Year of Culture 2017.

Gurinder Chadha with Manish Malhotra looking on as she chats with the Queen

Speaking of Buckingham Palace, check out this photo. That’s the peacock, India’s national bird, projected across the front of the palace along with dancing figures

How cool! Buckingham Palace adding an Indian touch to the exterior

This launched the UK-INDIA Year of Culture. The celebration was announced by PM Narendra Modi during his November 2015 visit to London and it is to mark India’s 70 years of independence. Britain is also eyeing India as an important partner, especially as the nation prepares to lose their access to the European single market. The need to court India to enhance their trade relationship is an important one so expect to see more events like this pop up. There will also be several public events planned across Britain and India to mark the year of culture.

Queen Elizabeth visited India in 1961

From what I hear, the reception organizers ensured guests felt the presence and beauty of India through sights, sounds, and food. Guests snacked on items like Raj Puri, paneer squares in herb crust, tandoori prawn cocktails, and almond halwa tarts made by one of London’s oldest restaurants, Veeraswamy. As they snacked, they were treated to performances by local Indian dancers.

A peek at the chefs working hard to bring the best of Indian food to the celebs

Guests also were able to view a number of priceless artifacts from the Royal Collection that were put on display in the Picture Gallery. Items like a shawl woven by Gandhi on his loom that was given to Princess Elizabeth in 1947 as a wedding present. The shawl has the words Jai Hind in the centre along with a hand-written note from Gandhi addressed to Lord Mountbatten, then Viceroy of India.

The shawl gifted by Gandhi

The note reads: ‘The little thing is made out of doubled yarn of my own spinning…please give the bride and bridegroom this with my blessing with the wish that they would have a long and happy life of service of man….yours sincerely, M.K. Gandhi”

The royal couple check out some of the pieces from the Royal Collection

There were also paintings and manuscripts dating back to the 17th Century and a welcoming garland presented to the Queen when she visited India in 1961, the first by a reigning monarch for 50 years and the first time since independence.

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