As we set foot into the season of celebrations and festivities, HELLO! rounds up India’s brightest moments in recent months that deserve a toast.
As we sit down to write this, we’re taken back to the 2011 ICC World Cup final at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium, where chants of “India, India!” reverberated off the walls. Well, the pace at which the country and its immense talent is stealing the spotlight on the global stage is reminiscent of this World Cup victory. From sport and fashion, to design, science and much more, India is being celebrated across the globe. We explore our proudest moments in recent months.
The MET Gala’s Desi Roots
Aside from the tribute to Karl Lagerfeld, dresses as canvases and India’s sweetheart Alia Bhatt making her debut, the 2023 Met Gala was a tad more special for us. The reason: the carpet that adorned the steps of the year’s biggest fashion affair had its roots all the way in God’s Own Country, Kerala. The beige-toned carpet rolled out to welcome some of the biggest names from the world over, was woven by artisans of Cherthala-based Neytt by Extraweave, and later hand-painted by artists in New York. Extraweave supplied 58 rolls of the rug (each around 7,000sqm), made from Sisal fibre derived from the agave plant, sourced from Africa. This was, in fact, Extraweave’s second year in a row being commissioned for the Met Gala.
To The Moon And Back
Today, to say that India is making its mark around the planet would certainly be an understatement—for we’ve made a historic landing on the Moon! The Lander Module of Chandrayaan-3 finally touched down on the Moon on August 23, making India the first country to reach its unexplored larger south pole. “Chandrayaan-3 is the result of the work done by thousands of engineers and staff across institutions,” said ISRO Chairman S Somanath. “It was not an easy task at all. The learnings from Chandrayaan-2 really helped us perfect the methodology.” Launched on July 14, this was the third lunar mission of the space organisation which aims to operate the lander (Vikram) and rover (Pragyan) for roughly one lunar day (14 Earth days). Both are equipped with instruments designed to deepen our understanding of the Moon.
Hitting The Bullseye
While the tournament received little to no attention in mainstream media, our archers made us proud. At the Archery World Cup 2023 (Stage 4) held in Paris, India finished with five medals. The women’s compound archery team of Aditi Gopichand Swami,Jyothi Surekha Vennam and Parneet Kaur—the same trio that secured a gold at the World Archery Championships in Berlin—bagged another gold. In fact, the 17-year-old Swami became the youngest women’s world champion in modern archery history. The men’s compound team of Ojas Pravin Deotale, Prathamesh Jawkar and Abhishek Verma also won gold, while the men’s and women’s recurve teams won bronze medals. Jyothi Surekha Vennam brought home India’s only medal in the individual events—a bronze in the women’s compound competition.
India’s G20 Presidency
This year, India has further entrenched itself as an architect of the global agenda by assuming the presidency of the G20. A significant milestone in its global leadership role, India’s focus as the chair remains on inclusive growth, digital innovation, climate resilience and equitable global health access. The move is in line with the government’s aim to stand out on the international stage, further allowing India to direct change, spearhead initiatives towards sustainability, as well as play champion to the causes of emerging economies.
The Spotlight On Indian Craftsmanship
The Pre-Fall show for Christian Dior at the Gateway of India in Mumbai was a showcase of all the ways the luxury brand is interlinked with India and its artisanry. With the towering landmark serving as the backdrop and a runway flanked by floral masterpieces, the French maison—led by the unorthodox Creative Director Maria Grazia Chiuri—shone the spotlight on traditional Indian handicrafts. This was unlike any other international label (think mirrored Rajasthani embroidered mini-dresses), thanks in part to the skilled women of the Chanakya Atelier in Mumbai, helmed by Karishma Swali.
Gaurav Gupta: The Real Head-Turner
This “dreamer, designer and doer” has been a favourite among Indian A-listers for years. Now, Gaurav Gupta is making waves (quite literally) in the global fashionscape. Loved Beyoncé’s costumes for her Renaissance Tour? Or the flowing, shimmery silver number Lizzo wore for her Governor’s Ball performance? Or the striking blue, cut-out dresses that Jenna ‘Wednesday’ Ortega wore for Saturday Night Live, or supermodel Coco Rocha sported at Cannes? Or Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s detailed Cannes ensemble?
Yes, these were all GG. His signature structured gowns, reminiscent of waves and delicate brushstrokes, also made their debut at Paris Fashion Week 2023, as did his ready-to-wear line at Neiman Marcus. From Cardi B and Natasha Poonawalla, to actors Jeremy Pope and Jr NTR, and rapper Maluma, Gupta is everyone’s hot favourite right now!
This story has been adapted for the website from a story that was originally published in Hello! India’s September 2023 issue. Get your hands on the latest issue right here!