Cool mantra

PREET AR­JUN SINGH, 25, En­tre­pre­neur

India Today - - SIMPLY PUNJABI COVER STORY -

Founder of con­cept brand store Karma Repub­lic in Chandi­garh, 25-year-old Preet Ar­jun Singh is spread­ing aware­ness about so­cial is­sues through self-de­signed T shirts. He quit his job at In­fosys in 2008 to pur­sue his pas­sion and is mak­ing the con­cept of so­cial aware­ness and com­mu­nity par­tic­i­pa­tion a ‘cool’ thing. “Stu­dent or­gan­i­sa­tions and NGOS find it tough to mar­ket their vol­un­teer pro­grams,” he says. “So I started We Vol­un­teer (a so­cial youth ini­tia­tive) in Pun­jab En­gi­neer­ing Col­lege.” The cam­paign used the web, posters, fly­ers, web­sites, and e-mail­ers to spread so­cial aware­ness amongst the youth.

MAIDEN HIT Singh de­signed his first Tshirt, 1947-I Salute as an ex­ten­sion of this. The tee had a map of In­dia on it along with the names of free­dom fight­ers. As soon as Singh up­loaded its pic­ture on Face­book, his in­box was flooded with re­quests for sim­i­lar tees. “I got 1,000 T shirts made, which sold out in three days,” he says. En­cour­aged by the re­sponse, he launched Karma Repub­lic in July 2010 and “since then there has been no look­ing back.” In 2010, Karma Repub­lic sold 7,000 tees online through Face­book, e-bay and kar­mare

pub­lic.com.

SO­CIAL CAUSE He has col­lab­o­rated with NGOS like Smile Foun­da­tion and Jaago Re, Delhi which have made Karma Repub­lic T shirts a part of their mer­chan­dise.

Con­tact: pree­tar­jun@gmail.com

“Un­like a 9 to 5 job, de­sign­ing tees gives me the free­dom to ex­per­i­ment. I’m not ap­proach­ing any ven­ture cap­i­tal­ists, be­cause I don’t want ide­ol­ogy to be com­pro­mised for quick money.”

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