Sunday, November 5, 2017

Ché Guevara’s Beret in Himachal Pradesh

Berets with a silver star, as sported by revolutionary Ché Guevara, has caught fancy of Left supporters in Himachal Pradesh.
As Himachal Pradesh heads for the November 9 elections, the state capital is seeing red berets making an appearance in addition to the traditional green and maroon Himachali topis (caps), synonymous with loyalty to the Congress and the BJP.
“The demand for the beret has gone up in a week. People used to wear Himachali caps with pride till recently but this time the beret with a star is in vogue,” says Puran Chand, a shopkeeper in Shimla’s Ram Bazaar.
To cash in on his popularity, the Left-oriented Student Federation of India has ordered Ché Guevara T-shirts for supporters. The beret is also popular among activists of the SFI and DYFI.
“Che Guevara has a global appeal,” says Tikender Panwar, a member of the CPM state secretariat. The Left wields an influence in Shimla town ever since it tasted victory in 1993 when its senior leader, Rakesh Singha, trounced Congress candidate Harbhajan Singh Bhajji.

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