Ahead of PMC election, coffee mugs, key chains, T-shirts, pens, friendship bands bearing political symbols and slogans in high demand as parties flood city with these trendy products in bid to connect with youth

Politicians launching campaigns to woo voters before elections is not a new phenomenon. Now, the latest fad to hit parties ahead of the upcoming PMC election is customised daily-use products to attract voters.

Political parties are always thinking of innovative ways of getting their message across to voters, and cashing in on this need are two youths who have already made more than Rs 1 lakh in just a week by designing products with party names, symbols and slogans.

Prasad More (32) and Daulat Jadhav (34), who are small-time designers from Mumbai, decided to make customised products for political parties and the idea became a hit. From T-shirts to coffee mugs, and key chains and pens to friendship bands, they have been designing various products for parties.

Ranging in price from Rs 15 to Rs 300, the products are targeted at college students and parties are making sure these are available in the market and at exhibitions and political events.

"We have invested Rs 5 lakh and did a survey of colleges in Mumbai and Pune before hitting on this novel idea. Things like T-shirts, key chains and friendship bands are regular items which people purchase.

Customised products for a political party; Prasad More and
Daulat Jadhav, who make such products for parties


So slogans and pictures of political parties will help spread the message (for parties) prior to the elections," More said. "We have already got some orders and have now approached more political parties in Pune."

Jadhav said theirs was a purely business venture and they would be happy to customise products for any political party that approached them. "We do not have any political leanings and are doing this just as a business venture ahead of the civic polls," Jadhav said.

Political parties in the city look keen to use this novel idea to spread the party message across. "We are interested in having such customised products as part of the NCP campaign," Nilesh Nikam, former leader of the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) house, said.

"In fact, we have been working on this idea for a while and have identified small, independent savings groups of women in rural areas who can make such products. Some queries have already been made and we will take a decision soon."

Shyam Deshpande, Shiv Sena group leader, said his party was also keen to order for products. "It is a novel concept. We are keen to place such orders if people are doing this business in Pune," Deshpande said. "We are looking for designers and manufacturers."

Branding exercise
Political parties have already started printing party names and slogans on school stationery. Notebooks, pencil cases and even tiffin boxes are available at stationery shops for PMC as well as private schools.

Kirti Kumar Shinde (30) has published a book on the speeches made by MNS chief Raj Thackeray and has launched it on Wednesday. The book has been priced at Rs 100.