When people mention the word fashion, most would think of high heels, make-up and clothes that are extraordinary looking for women. Only few people would really think about men. And, why is that? People believe that men are too busy to even think about fashion. Is that true?
Well, that is not the case for the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi. He is one political leader who believes that you have to look good even when you are dealing with national issues. You will never see Modi in a public appearance using shabby clothes. Always in his neat and crisp kurtas and jacket, fashion gurus can say that Modi is not just serious with politics, but also with his fashion taste. Most of the time Modi would be in his half-sleeve kurtas and slim fit ‘Nehru’ jacket that shows a row of buttons in front and a mandarin collar. What makes his style different is his color preference. The Prime Minister prefers rainbow inspired kutras or jackets. You will see him using chrome yellow, sky blue, red, light orange or peach attire. The first prime minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru only used traditional colors such as black or grey.
Moreover, it is very interesting to note that fans or followers and even cabinet members of Modi show their solid support by using the same style. In Sarojini Nagar marketplace, hundreds of jackets are seen hanging in every boutique. The style of Modi is so popular that the ‘Nehru’ jacket is now called the ‘Modi’ jacket. The sales of the jacket style have reached 100 percent according to Lakshman, the person-in-charge of Khadi Gramodyog Bhavan.
Everyone may be demanding for the Modi style and color, but old timers will always call the jacket ‘Nehru jacket’. Aside from his political work and success, the jacket will always be the legacy of Jawaharlal Nehru simple because he was the first to use it.
Be as it may, a lot of Indians should say thank you to Modi for making the Nehru jacket well-known not just in India but around the world. According to Vogue India editor Priya Tanna it is very rare to see “such a strong convergence between what a politician in India stands for and his clothing.”
Modi did not just influence the political arena, but also the fashion and movie world. Chanel and other big names in fashion presented their own take in the Nehru jacket. Just last year, Marchesa proudly showed their Spring/Summer collection at the New York fashion week. Their collection was Indian inspired. In showbiz, big movie stars, like Sean Connery and Mike Myers, were also seen sporting the style.
Meanwhile, the latest political leader seen using a Nehru jacket is Chinese President Xi Jinping. When Jinping visited India last September, Prime Minister Narendra Modi presented a Nehru jacket as a gift. The Chinese president used the jacket with his white shirt when they toured the Sabarmati Ashram.
So whatever the name, be it “Modi’ jacket or ‘Nehru’ jacket, one thing is sure the slim coat with buttons and mandarin collar will never die. It may fade a while, but it will never die because it is a timeless classic!