Cairo: In a gesture of appreciation and honour, a Saudi man had presented a bisht cloak, which he wore about 26 years ago at his graduation ceremony, to his son as a gift on his graduation day.
The bisht is a traditional male attire. A symbol of prestige and respect in the Arabian region, the bisht is traditionally worn at official ceremonies, religious festivities and on other occasions such as wedding parties or during visits.
The time-honoured cloak has long been a formal statement for royals, tribesmen and senior officials on different occasions.
“This is my graduation bisht dating back to 26 years,” the father said as he attended his son’s graduation ceremony at the Shaqra University in Shaqra province in the Riyadh region.
“I feel this is an extension of me,” he told iEN TV, a Saudi education broadcaster.
More than 4,900 students graduated at the ceremony at the Shaqra University, a public institution, for obtaining the bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the ceremony.
The gala also featured the launch of a SR73 million housing project for accommodating around 570 students at the university.
Last December, Argentine football icon Lionel Messi drew global attention to the bisht attire after he was watched on television screens lifting the World Cup trophy in Qatar while wearing the bisht.
According to pundits, the bisht-making vocation came to Qatar in the 1930s from Al Ihsa region in east of neighbouring Saudi Arabia.
At the hands of migrating artisans, the craft has spread across the Arabian Gulf and beyond.