Monday, 24. November 2014
07. 08. 14. - 15:00
An Indian textile magnate who made a fortune from his clothing empire is making sure the rest of the world knows about his success – by having a shirt made out of pure gold.
Although he left school without any qualifications Pankaj Parakh still managed to make a fortune after establishing a multi-million pound textile business in India. And now, to celebrate his upcoming 45th birthday on Friday, he has commissioned the solid gold shirt that weighs more than four kilos.
He said: "I wanted to wear something special when I say my thanks for my success at a thanksgiving visit to the Siddhivinayak Temple of the Hindu elephant god in Mumbai."
And after paying just 127,000 GBP to buy the gold and have it turned into a golden shirt, he reckons he got a bargain.
According to local media the gold shirt has really got him noticed as he marched along the streets of his home in Yeola, 260 km from the city of Mumbai, where he says he gets admiring looks from women and envious looks from men.
He said: "I never go out with less than 2 to 3 kilos of gold jewellery. I have always been fascinated with gold since I was five-years-old and studying in school. And over the years that interest has become a real passion. So it was logical that I would want to make my 45th birthday a golden affair.
"In fact even on my wedding 23 years ago a lot of people said it was embarrassing that I was wearing more gold than my bride, but I just love the Royal metal."
And the cost of the gold shirt is reportedly a fraction of what he has splashed out to make sure the birthday party is a spectacular affair, with hundreds of guests including Maharashtra tourism minister Chhagan Bhujbal of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and around a dozen MPs from various parties and Indian celebrities.
The shirt that has seven solid gold buttons is due to be officially modelled by the clothing magnate on Friday, but he tried it on in advance after collecting it from the Shanti Jewellers at Parel in Mumbai, where a team of around 20 craftsmen collectively spent 3,200 hours over the past two months to 'stitch' it together.
The gold used in the shirt has an 18-22 carat purity, without any other metals, and he added: "Before the taxman starts coming round, I can guarantee that every bit is properly recorded in my company accounts."
Despite being made of gold the shirt has been so carefully made that it is as flexible as a normal shirt, he claims, and also just as comfortable because there is a thin cloth lining the inside.
He said: "It is easily washed and can be hung up to dry just like a normal piece of clothing, and a good a lifetime guarantee with it so that if it's torn or damaged it will quickly be repaired."
After leaving school early before graduating he had thrown all of his efforts into developing the family garments business in Yeola, a town of some 60,000.
He is married to wife Pratibha and has sons Siddharth, 22, and Rahul, 19, both now in college, and added: "I am the only one in the family that seems so passionate about gold, the rest of my family is neither impressed or interested in gold. They just accept that it's my passion and it's part of our domestic life. My more extended family however think I'm a bit weird but I guess that's families."
He is a local politician himself and despite criticism that he flaunts his wealth among people who are poorer, he is actively involved in community projects and recently funding 120 operations for polio suffers at the Narayan Seva Sansthan Hospital of Udaipur in Rajasthan.
"I spend at least a week each year offering voluntary services at the 1,000-bedded hospital, the biggest and best for polio treatment in India. I also arrange for any requirements of the poor patients like food, medicines, surgery and blankets, from which I get immense satisfaction," Parakh said.
And he added: "I admit you need to be brave to wear a shirt like this, brave and also in possession of a gun like my fully licensed revolver which I also carry with me every time I go out."
Mad About Mammoths At Vienna Museum
A unique exhibition in the Austrian capital Vienna has proved a massive hit after bringing together for the first time some of the most famous frozen woolly mammoth remains.
Controversy Over Advert For Fucking Hell Beer
An Austrian political party has defended a decision to promote a local beer named after the village of Fucking.
Luigi Restaurant Cooks Up Delicious Delights For Winter Season
Brothers Luigi and Leo Doci who own the renowned Luigi restaurant chain will be cooking up a storm in Semmering this winter.
Church Porn Star In Court
A Polish-born woman who made a video of herself masturbating in church is facing six months in jail after a viewer called police when he recognised the woman.
Hugh Grant Cuddles Lamb On Animal Farm With Mrs Glock
Hugh Grant led a star-studded turnout at Austria's animal farm project which unveiled its Christmas market this week.
Cheating Wife Buries Hubby Alive For New Lover
A woman who married her sister’s fiance and then attacked him with a knife before burying him alive so she could be with her new lover is facing life in jail.
Spate of Crimes throughout Vienna and Lower Austria Solved
Four men have been arrested after committing 113 break-ins, 21 thefts and causing at least 260,000 Euros worth of damage.
Dad Punished Child, 2, With Boiling Hot Shower
A two-year-old girl is in an artificial coma and fighting for her life after her father threw her into a scalding hot shower leaving her with severe burns at the family home in the Austrian capital Vienna.
Police And Firemen Get Cold Turkey
Flipping the bird was given a new meaning in Austria this week when a truck filled with plucked turkeys overturned, closing a busy motorway in the process.
Hotel Gets A Penthouse Without The Building Stress
A hotel in the southern Austrian city of Graz has gone upmarket with a five-star penthouse suite by simply having it lifted by a crane onto the top floor.
The most popular stories –
last 7 days
|Controversy Over Advert For Fucking Hell Beer|
|Half Naked Winnie The Pooh Banned From Playground|
|Explosive Flash In Russia Blamed On Meteor|
|Luigi Restaurant Cooks Up Delicious Delights For Winter Season|
|Greedy Panda Chews Through Weighing Scales|
Why suffer in silence. Let off steam by letting our readers share your troubles. File your complaints about anything and everything here.
Our ombudsman David Rogers will try and help solve some of the problems from lazy civil servants through to incompetent companies – and at the very least the worst transgressors will end up in our weekly special report.