In Bhutan, clapping is meant to ward off evil spirits and not as a gesture of appreciation.

Bhutanese MPs on Monday deviated from the custom of not clapping and broke into applause after Prime Minister Narendra Modi ended his extempore address in Hindi to a joint sitting of Parliament here.

In Bhutan, clapping is meant to ward off evil spirits and not as a gesture of appreciation.

The gathering, which included Bhutanese Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay and members of the National Assembly and the National Council, broke into an applause as Mr. Modi ended his address to the joint session.

The joint sessions are held in the chamber of the National Assembly (lower House), attended by members from the National Council (upper House).

Though Mr. Modi carried a prepared text, he delivered his 45-minute address extempore. There were interpreters at hand to translate the speech in which he shared his thoughts on India-Bhutan relations.