Two schoolgoing kids were among the seven persons who bid for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s pinstripe monogrammed suit on the first day of a formal auction held in Surat on Wednesday.
Though the highest bid of Rs 1.21 crore came from textile businessman Rajesh Juneja, Vedant Karnavat (7) and his elder brother Siddhant (13) put their saved pocket money on line for the suit that Modi wore during US President Barack Obama’s visit to India.
Residents of Surat, the brother duo filled the bidding form for the suit and quoted Rs 1 lakh as their bid. Though the quote was far lower than the opening bid of Rs 11 lakh made by Pankaj Maheshwari, a chartered accountant, the brothers did not sound disappointed.
“We like Narendra Modi and are proud of him. He was not from a well-to-do family, but worked hard for many years and has now become the country’s Prime Minister. We had saved Rs 1 lakh from our pocket expenses and decided to use it to purchase the suit,” said Siddhant Karnavat on the sidelines of the auction where gift articles received by Modi and Gujarat CM Anandiben Patel were being sold.
Siddhant said: “We know that we will not get the coat but we tried. Even then we will donate the Rs 1 lakh for the noble cause of cleaning of the Ganga river.” Siddhant and Vedant’s father is a textile trader.
The highest bidder on the first day Rajesh Juneja (57) said: “We are big fans of Narendra Modi. At present I have not decided about what to do with this suit, but most probably we will make a glass cupboard, hang it there and preserve it.”
Juneja runs a textile trading shop in Surat’s Begampura area and his business has an annual turnover of Rs 15 crore.
Sources said a total of 826 gift items of Prime Minister Narendra Modi (465 items) and Chief Minister Anandiben Patel (361) were put on display. Among the 826 gift items, the centre of attraction was Modi’s suit.