WORLDPOST

Burkini-Style Swimwear Has Been Popular In India For Years

27/08/2016 12:53 AM IST | Updated 27/08/2016 12:53 AM IST
NEW! HIGHLIGHT AND SHARE
Highlight text to share via Facebook and Twitter
ReutersAmit Dave
Cooling off.

Bollywood stars may show off their bikini bodies on screen but a trip to the beach or a swimming pool in India reveals that modest swimwear is the more popular choice.

Across the country, stores sell swimsuits with sleeves, shorts, and even little skirts to women who are just more comfortable with more clothing on. And that has nothing to do with their religion.

While France’s burkini ban conflates top-to-toe swimwear with religious fundamentalism, in India, as in other parts of the non-western world, coverage is simply essential for comfort. In fact, it’s not rare to see women enjoying water park rides fully-dressed, floating among the crowd in a public swimming pool wearing saris or salwar kameezes.

For instance, here’s some photos of Indian women at water parks across the country.

EPASanjeev Gupta
Girls smile as they enjoy a shower in a water park in the outskirts of Bhopal Madhya Pradesh.
EPASanjeev Gupta
Young girls play in a water park in Bhopal.
EPAPiyal Adhikary
Young boys and girls cool down from the excessive heat in a water park in Kolkata.
EPASanjeev Gupta
Indian women play in a water park.
AP PhotoMustafa Quraishi
Two women on a water slide in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.

And here are some of the swimwear options on sale at India’s top e-commerce websites:

ScreenshotAmazon Myntra Flipkart

For Indian women, being covered gives them the freedom to go out and enjoy the water, without worrying about the way that their bodies look.

And that’s exactly what the creator of the burkini,

Add Indian women to that list.

This article originally appeared on Quartz India.

More On This Topic