I had written this on the day Rc Dalal had passed away, I remember I had seen the news on one of the Facebook platforms of one JD Institute of Fashion Technology. I immediately wrote my tributes on Facebook and Twitter. It took some time for me to accept the news as I can’t believe that he is no more. In my last conversation, we had discussed how to take JD on a bigger platform with the help of social and digital media. I had shared a few ideas with him which he liked and said “let’s do it then.” He was going abroad and said we would sit to discuss once he was back. I was working with Nyoooz in Noida and I still recall his SMS within a few hours saying, “Indeed a great meeting. This is what happens when two like-minded people meet and think on the same lines…” Today sharing as a blog, it was very hard to key-in these lines…
It was very hard to believe the news since RC (as fondly called) was always a friend. I would not hesitate even a bit to call or message him whenever I required the slightest assistance from him. Another reason why the news shook me deep within is that since 1993 when I first met him at the JD Institute of Fashion Technology, Lokayata, Hauz Khas Village, never ever saw him gloom-faced or depressed, he was always so full of warmth with a smile. Many moments are coming to my mind but if I start keying them all then this blog will turn into a book. When I was working for The Statesman and I needed to do a career feature on Fashion Designing my first choice was JD and I had called up RC as in those days there were no mobiles. He in his cult style said, “Come on dear, you don’t have to be formal…Come anytime you want, I am here…”
I had shared many moments even after passing out from JD. There had been so many ‘special’ moments (from fashion shows to casual chat over tea at his office). In this regard, I recall a rain-dance fashion show held at GK Club. While introducing me to other journalists he said JDiiian turned media man. I can never forget him saying “perhaps the only journalist here who don’t take alcohol, a total teetotaler…” and offered me a glass of Pepsi. It was so full of warmth, there are so many ‘nostalgic’ memories that today bring tears to my eyes. Whenever I visited Hauz Khas Village, I would drop by to say hello. Invariably, these meetings would last for a few hours and both of us would go down memory lane of JD as we loved to recall.
A few months back I met him at his office in Hauz Khas (the new one and I called him up to confirm the location) RC not only explained in detail but had come to the staircase to welcome me. (The last meeting with him. The one I had mentioned in the introduction.) I am really loss of words. All I can say is RC was a great friend (so many moments taking me down memory lane…) We had also discussed over his new initiative – association with cinema, though he said old classics are not be included and I had a difference of views on that being a cine love but not the time to talk about that at this moment.
RC always was full of ideas of how to promote ‘fashions’, he was always open to embracing the ‘new’ since he always believed that ‘fashion’ needs a revamp for which ‘new’ will have to be welcomed (we had a long chat on trends and changes), a huge loss to the fashion industry. It will not be complete if I don’t share a few anecdotes. During one of the meetings, he said he was planning to hit the states as there is immense scope but then fashion designing was reaching a saturation point. So, he was planning to introduce allied subjects keeping pace with the feel and mood of fashion but might not be apparels. Another, as I have already shared was the hitting social and digital media in a big way and for that, he said “I would like to discuss with you and also listen as you are someone whom I know as a fashion designer (a jadiiian) and into journalism. He would always tell me to take up fashion journalism as my outlook would be from a fashion point of view and know the typically Page 3 perspective that is nowhere near the fashion reportage. My parents too would tell me the same.
It’s a personal loss to me, I really have no one to look upto when I need any assistance in fashion – from trends to market and even designing. I will always miss his smile, so full of warmth. May his soul rest in peace.