Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his European visit presented gifts to leaders of Nordic countries that had highlighted India’s rich past, cultural diversity, martial traditions, age-old handicrafts, and exquisite work of artisans. The gifts obtained from several Indian states included A Dokra boat from Chattisgarh to Crown Prince Fredrik, a Silver Meenakari Bird figure from Banaras to Crown Princess Mary, a Brass ‘Tree of Life’ from Rajasthan, which PM Modi gifted to his Finland counterpart Sanna Marin, a Rogan painting from Gujarat to Queen Margrethe II of Denmark among others.
The Dokra boat that he presented to the Crown prince of Denmark is a metal casting made using 4,000 year old wax casting technique. These non-ferrous artifacts depicting folk motifs made mainly in Central and eastern India have great demand in the foreign and domestic markets.
The silver Meenakari bird from Benaras is made through a silver enameling technique that has its root in erstwhile Persia. The base is a silver sheet attached to a metallic base. The most distinguishing element of Banaras Meenakari is the use of pink colour in various shades on various products.
The brass ‘Tree of Life’ handmade sculpture represents the connection of human life to mother nature and the candle stand represents light. The branch of a tree with various life forms represents inclusiveness.
The Rogan painting from Gujarat’s Kutch area is made from boiled oil and vegetable dyes. Artists skillfully place a small amount of this paint paste into their palms and carefully twist it into motifs using a metal rod. Next, the artisan folds his designs into a blank fabric, thereby printing its mirror image.
Norway Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Store received a ‘Dhaal’ with Koftgiri art from Rajasthan. Koftgiri is inlay work with gold and silver wires used for decorating arms and shields and at present used over decorative pieces. The Koftgiri craft enriches the surface of the metals on which article it is engraved.
PM Modi gifted Pashmina stole packed in Papier Mache box from Jammu and Kashmir to his Sweden counterpart Magdalena Andersson. Kashmiri Pashmina shawls are known for their warmth and soft fabric. Its exquisite craftsmanship and reminiscent designs are beyond comparison. The wool used comes from a special breed of goat found in the high-altitude regions of the Himalayas. Pure gold foil and paint impart a royal look to the piece.
Another piece, a Kutchi wall hanging, was gifted by PM Modi to Mette Frederiksen, his Danish counterpart. Earlier, the PM had gifted Sedali, a sitting desk made in Surat, to German chancellor Olaf Scholz.
The Prime Minister had bilateral meetings with his counterparts from the Nordic countries of Denmark, Iceland, Finland, Sweden, and Norway in Copenhagen and also took part in the second India-Nordic Summit.