The designers of the new ₹2,000 bill -- Prime Minister Narendra Modi's most memorable gift to the Indian economy this year -- may not have delivered the most aesthetically pleasing work. But those working on the layout of the official government calendar for 2017 got the brief loud and clear.
Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu unveiled the government of India's 2017 calendar yesterday and each one of the 12 months had one man common to it: Narendra Modi, in various garbs, hanging out with a range of characters. His (well-known) weakness for quaint headgears is apparent once again, as is evident from the helmet-wearing engineers to tribal people wearing peacock feather.
While the theme may not have come as a surprise to most, the prominence given to the images in contrast with the dates (which is the real point of a calendar) has raised a few smirks. The Telegraph did a clinical investigation and found Modi's image to occupy just under 48% of the page, as opposed to the less than 5% space given to him in the 2015 and 2016 calendars.
Here are some sample pages of the calendar, tweeted out by Naidu.
Rediff.com had already predicted a similar theme for the government calendar for 2017, since Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled his own self-styled almanac a few weeks ago. From posing as a cowboy to with a cat, the many moods of the iron-handed ruler are captured on each page of the document.
Although Modi seems to have followed Putin's example, it may not be a good idea to remind every Indian of his omnipresence every day, especially after his final gift to the nation in 2016: demonetisation.
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