Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla was seen sporting a Khadi wrist-watch at the Parliament today, and it garnered a lot of attention. A gift from Nitin Gadkari who helms the MSME (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) Ministry to the Speaker and his wife, it’s mention led to other members wondering when they will receive such watches.
When the minister mentioned the gift, DMK leader T R Baalu and some other members were heard asking, “What about members?” To which Gadkari remarked, “I will try to give it (wristwatch) on concession rate; it is (now) out of the market,” and many of the ministers were seen smiling.
The watch, which is a product of the latest collaboration between Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) and Titan, features a dial and straps made using Khadi material. The watches, put together by women, cost Rs 5000 each. The watch sports a silver dial displaying the Charkha with the handwoven signature fabric in the background and on the straps.
It is for the first time that Titan has used a non-horological material like khadi on the dial and strap of their timepieces. Speaking on the occasion of the launch, Ravi Kant, CEO, Watches & Wearables, Titan Company Limited had commented, “Khadi is revered in India and worldwide due to its uniqueness of being handspun, handwoven and is truly a sustainable fabric. To commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, we are happy to launch this special edition Khadi collection in collaborations with KVIC.”
The collection has been inspired by Mahatma Gandhi, for whom khadi and watches were an integral part of life. Gadkari addressed the launch event and said, “I’m really glad to see KVIC & Titan collaborating to pay a true tribute. With this extraordinary initiative, Khadi will find its way on the wrists of the modern young Indian. I am sure this will lead to a bright future of artisans in our economy.”
Since khadi is handwoven fibre, every single watch in this collection will have a distinctive weave and texture. The straps of the watches have also been treated with a special coating to make them more durable without compromising on its authentic texture. The collection touted to be a unique and elegant blend of simplicity and modernity. Vinai Kumar Saxena, Chairman of Khadi and Village Industries Commission said, “Khadi is one of the most eco-friendly materials with zero carbon footprint and requires least water consumption. Together with Titan, we have created beautiful contemporary timepieces that are truly special for the generations to keep by using authentic Khadi.”
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