Just so there is no confusion on where I stand on this issue, I don’t think very highly of our prime minister wearing a suit monogrammed multiple times with his name. It lacked grace and reeked of self-importance.
And no, I don’t think very highly of people who use Louis Vuitton bags or other brands that carry the brand name printed all over the clothes or bags either.
It reminded me of the women you see with Juicy Couture emblazoned on their posteriors. And of Kanye West, who wears his name printed in very large letters on his clothes.
But he’s a pop star. Unless, of course, Narendra Modi simply didn’t want to get his suit lost in the laundry and had his name written on it, like we did in school.
The suit would have been fine if worn by politicians whom we’ve grown to associate with entitlement, say, Rahul or Sonia Gandhi. But it seemed a little bizarre for a politician who has long touted his simple roots and aversion to the snooty ways of Lutyens’ Delhi.
For whatever reason though, best known to Modi, he wore what he wore. That, too, while meeting Barack Obama, just to ensure that every news camera that was focused on the two got a good close look at his sartorial splendour. The fact that the other world leader who’d worn a similar suit to Modi was Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak is just a depressing footnote to the entire saga.
The suit, it turns out, was gifted to Modi by a long-time friend and businessman from Gujarat, Rameshkumar Bhikabhai Virani, on the occasion of Virani’s son’s wedding. Modi even wore the suit to Virani’s son’s wedding. But then, obviously taking ashine to it, he decided to wear it to his tête-à-tête with Obama.
After a lengthy uncharacteristic silence by Modi on the suit, a swell idea seems to have been struck on to save the day. The suit would be auctioned for charity. Nothing like vanity charity. This is in keeping with earlier annual auctions of the gifts Modi received as Gujarat chief minister, proceeds of which were given to the Kanya Kelavani Yojana for girl child education.
So, at a three-day event that started on Wednesday in Surat, the Modi suit, along with 455 other items Modi had received as PM, went under the hammer to generate funds for the Prime Minister’s Clean Ganga Mission. What could be a better way to wash away the seeming sin of wearing the said suit?
But the plot only gets thicker. The final price bid on Friday was, hold your breath, Rs 4.31 crore. Another bid of Rs 5 crore was rejected after the 5:00 pm deadline.
Now, I’ve never understood why anyone would want to buy someone else’s used clothes. Granted, this is similar to buying used clothes at the Salvation Army shop. You know the money will go to charity. But that someone would spend Rs 4.31 crore to buy Narendra Modi’s used suit shocks me to the bones.
Who has this kind of money to spare? Clearly, many Gujarati diamond merchants. The charitable soul who finally became the proud owner of Modi’s ‘reject’ is a Laljibhai Patel.
Earlier bidders included a Komal Kant Sharma, a Bhavnagar-based ship-breaker and diamond trader and CMD of the Leela group of companies.
The last time Sharma was in the news was when I-T officials found unaccounted-for income of Rs 27 crore while conducting tax raids on three Bhavnagar-based ship-breaking firms that included Sharma’s.
At least throwing diamond money at a used pinstriped suit is a good way of folks like Sharma to ensure that their sins are also washed away —through a Clean Ganga campaign. It also gives a very Robin Hoodesque touch to the entire auction: of taking money from the filthy rich to give it to the poor.
This really seems to be the suit of all sorrows. Anyone coming in contact with it — never mind wearing it —is showered with bad publicity. I don’t envy Modi this suit. If I was him, I would excommunicate the suit-giver pronto.
The lesson in all this is that desi is best. How wrong could he have possibly gone with a churidar-kurta? The emperor, it seems, would have been better off with no new clothes.
MY POST (Spoof!) on this ISSUE of the "EMPEROR'S NEW CLOTHES" or "The story of the EMPEROR who BECOMES NAKED assuming he has worn a FANTASTIC DRESS!
The man who GIFTED this (PURPORTEDLY) Rs 10 LAKH worth COAT should go on
to the INCOME TAX SCANNER and be permanently there and in the first INSTANCE
the whole ISSUE of this COSTLY GIFT and whether ANY BLACK MONEY / HAWALA
transactions have gone in to it AND if so to WHAT extent, if at all, the
RECIPIENT of this GIFT may be culpable for HAVING RECEIVED such a "BLACK
COLOURED GIFT" (metaphorically speaking!) NEEDS to be INVESTIGATED by a
TOTALLY INDEPENDENT, SUPREME COURT APPOINTED, JUDICIAL- SIT (KYA Yeh lagta hai ki THODA ZYADA ho GAYA?! TELL me if
you don’t FIND it FUNNY!) since the CBI under this NDA government has got
converted from being a "LIVE PARROT under the UPA-II" to being a
"ROBOTIC PARROT" that goes
ONLY on the BEHEST of the Government and only AFTER those whom the GOVT wants to SUBDUE like MAMATA
BANERJEE ( AND Considering that DOZENS of FAKE ENCOUNTER CRIMINALS in UNIFORM
have been provided with a CLEAN CHIT (or is it to be TERMED "CLEAN
GOVERNMENT SHIT or SHEET?!), the SIT necessarily should be an INDEPENDENT
JUDICIAL SIT and that too, one that is
appointed by the Supreme Court!
AND even the ULTIMATE BIDDER who gets the COAT ( along with all the
SWEAT and TOIL of the CEO who wore this coat for a WHOLE DAY- FREE!) should be
put on the INCOME TAX scanner so that the IT- VIGILANCE group gets to FATHOM
this DEEP and what appears to be a case of SCRATCHING EACH OTHERS BACKS
mutually under the COATS while KEEPING PILES and PILES of UNDECLARED WEALTH /
MONEY/ AND GIFTS stashed somewhere AWAY from the VIGILANT (?) eyes of the IT
ALL the above suggestions HAVE BEEN made JUST in JEST and JUST LIKE that
(!) to BRING OUT the fact that the “CAMEO performance of the C E O” is now
DEVELOPING in to not just a NATIONAL but an INTERNATIONAL “FARCE”!