Yes, you read that right: A novelty t-shirt shop in the Indian province of Ahmedabad dared to give itself the most infamous name in the world and lived to tell the tale—for a couple of weeks, at least. (Design nerds should note the assertive serif font and the must-be-ironic swastika over the “i”.)
You might ask yourself some variety of “what the hell were they thinking” when considering this most ridiculous of PR moves, and the big question is: was it an intentional provocation? Did the shop’s owners knowingly court controversy in the interest of selling more hip tees bearing the likenesses of Superman and Ghandi (love that pairing, BTW)?
The store’s owner initially pled ignorance regarding the name’s historical significance, and his “aw shucks” innocence was more believable in India than in almost any other country: The swastika was originally a Hindi symbol, and the practice of naming things “Hitler” is apparently “not uncommon” on the Indian subcontinent (though this is news to us). At any rate, the owner claimed that he bestowed the title in honor of his partner’s father, who earned the nickname “Hitler” after portraying the world’s most murderous dictator in a college play. End of story? Uh, no.