KARACHI: Tunisia, Libya, Egypt. It’s now time for Pakistan.
This is one of the messages emblazoned across the official t-shirts of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) that are to be worn by supporters during the rally in Karachi on Sunday.
The t-shirts cost up to Rs300 and can be bought from PTI camps set up around Karachi, four of which are already up and running at Nipa Chowrangi, Teen Talwar, PIDC and at Malir Halt. The president of the Insaf Students Federation (ISF) in Karachi, Arsalan Ghumman, said 17 more are in the works.
Ghumman explains that the motive behind making these products is to promote the cause while also gathering funds for party activities. Party merchandise is very simply their way of forwarding PTI’s message of change and spreading awareness. The products are vigorously marketed online via Twitter and Facebook. The ISF also has an SMS service, which is sending out messages promoting PTI merchandise.
Apart from t-shirts, the party has other products such as wrist bands, mugs, badges, caps and car stickers. Every step of the merchandise production, from designing to printing, is the work of PTI supporters, explained Ghumman. “PTI supporters in Dubai and Karachi, who are professionals, have designed these products,” he said. “We are in talks with a shop at the Millennium Mall and our volunteers have also sold these products at Sunday Bazaar,” he added.
Sidrah Nadeem, who owns tie shop All Tied Up in Defence Housing Society Phase VI, told The Express Tribune that she will make PTI products available at her store. “I am helping because I like Imran Khan,” she said, clarifying that she is doing it as voluntary supporter and not a member. It is people like her who pitch in at weekly ISF meetings to give suggestions on how to spread “the message of change.”
T-shirts are a great way for the party to create a sense of uniformity and, because they will be used for some time, they help propagate the idea. As she puts it: “It’s like saying you support Imran Khan, not just at the jalsa, but throughout the year.”
Published in The Express Tribune, December 22nd, 2011.
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ