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Customs, traditions and weather translate into what you would normally wear in India. So, a backless top is alright to wear at a night-club, it would be a big NO for a lunch at an Indian household.
Clothing is taken seriously in India. Nakedness is considered bad taste especially for women. Women with revelling clothes are looked at with severe disapproval. However, this does not mean that you cannot wear western clothes at all in India. As a matter of fact, a pair of jeans with a decent looking top has become a part of the Indian-metro attire and is being widely graced by its sub-urban population.
The right type of attire is actually a stepping stone towards understanding the typical Indian culture.
Attire for Office:
Three piece suits is the way to go for most of the formal Indian office settings. In case of women, a knee covered skirt with a full sleeved shirt or a decent sleeveless top is the preferred office dress code. A coat is a must for both men and women. Working in an advertising agency or a not so formal office setting would give you the leverage to pick up your own choice of clothes. However, at any instant, it is expected to come to office decently and professionally dressed.
Attire for Clubbing:
Watch an Indian commercial movie if you want to know the attire for clubbing. Wear whatever you want without going overboard.
Attire for Dinning:
Gowns, suits, jeans and t-shirts with full length trousers are all acceptable during dinning at a formal Indian restaurant. Cafes and casual restaurants also welcome knee length shorts with a top. The rule of thumb is to go decently dressed and cover your knees, chest and shoulders wherever possible especially in the sub-urban parts of India.
Attire for Dinners and Invites:
Living in India comes with a lot of dinner and formal invites by colleagues and local friends. Attending an Indian event like Holi is free from dress code. Wear whatever you feel like wearing. However on weddings and formal Indian parties wearing a formal Indian saree or sherwani will be appreciated by many locals. If sari does not feel comfortable, go for a traditional long kurta with loose, pleated trouser known as shalwar kameez.
Attire for Local Street Markets:
Dress appropriately while shopping at an Indian Street. Wearing an Indian dress or even a shirtwaist over jeans will help you blend in the crowd without making you conspicuous. Avoid anything that makes your presence felt as it can invite scammers and beggars.