A clothing store in Gujarat bearing the name ‘Hitler’, with swastika dots on the letter ‘i’, has sparked rage among Jewish community in Vastrapur.
The store, which sells Western menswear, has been controversial since its opening about 10 days ago after the Jewish community expressed outrage over the name.
Rajesh Shah, the store’s owner, said the name was not intended to hurt the Jewish community. He said the store was named after the nickname of his business partner Manish Chandani, due to his strict personality.
“Frankly, until the time we applied for the trademark permission, I had only heard that Hitler was a strict man,” Shah said.
Unconvinced, a group of Jewish sought Shah to change the name, however, he said he will only replace it if compensated for doing so.
“I will change it if people want to compensate me for the money we have spent – the logo, the hoarding, the business cards, the brand,” said Shah, adding the name was a good luck for the business.
“He (Rajesh) said his concept was never to hurt the community, and he feigned ignorance about Hitler. But we believe that he may have been aware about all this and was just pretending to be ignorant,” said Menasseh Solomon, secretary of the Magen Abraham Synagogue.
A similar uproar occurred in 2006 when a cafe named ‘Hitler’s Cross’, completed with swastika emblem, opened in Mumbai. The owner changed it to ‘Cross Cafe’ after protests.