A Compliment to the Community
by Arun Babani
Followers of Dr. Sigmund Freud discovered that a car is not only a status symbol, a prestigious possession for a successful man, but somewhat like his beloved, his mistress and a symbol of his self worth in society. So the more an individual feels on the top rung of the ladder the more prestige value he attaches to his car. He seeks to define and present himself wrapped in the brand and model of his automobile. To many a successful man a car is a passionate partner of his life, and gives his ego a boost that his real life partner cannot match; and so it not uncommon to come across men who refer to their “first love” in feminine genders “she’s smooth and silky”! As the Tatamobile ad campaign said: If all men are born equal, it must be their cars that help women to choose!
Mr. Dilip Chhabria, ‘DC’ to the world, is one such passionate admirer of cars, so much so that he can change, modify, or even create an automobile out of his imagination with such sensitivity, that his distinctive style has made him a household name, particularly in the upper echelons of society, world over.
DILIP CHHABRIA DESIGN, the name itself spells class and quality that is benchmarked against the very best in the world. It is a company driven by passion, where one man’s dream with cars has evolved into an organization with 200 professionals in less than 8 years. DCD has to its credit over 400 designs realized for high net worth individuals who aspire to drive a unique one of its kind car. DCD also designs speciality vehicles such as home-on-wheels, office-on-wheels for high profile successful customers.
The Sindhi Community has produced a lot of genuinely talented individuals, particularly in the post-partition India, but DC seems to have surpassed all yardsticks of success. In this he truly stands apart as a world class Sindhi and has in the process given a good name to the community. Says Mr. Chhabria. “Most people have biased images of Sindhis. The general view is that a Sindhi is unethical and prefers taking shortcuts to achieve his goals. All this must change and is slowly changing. We Sindhis should do all we can to change people’s perceptions of us. We have much talent in our community. We work hard and play hard. So may be others are jealous of the Sindhis because we spend our wealth with style”!
A picture that emerges on meeting Mr. Chhabria is of a simple, serene, yet sophisticated soul. His US background, where he did his automobile engineering, matches well with his humble Sindhi ‘Saadgi’. There’s an unassuming and sincere look in his eyes without even a hint of I’m-too-great attitude that is usually seen in successful entrepreneurs. Says he, “We in our family are totally integrated in traditional Indian values. I speak with my mother in Sindhi. I’ve married into a Sindhi family and I enjoy only Sindhi food at home, particularly Kadhi-Chahwal, and saibhaji are my favourites”. Mr. Chhabria explains “I was the only son of my parents, my father too was the only son so we as a family couldn’t create a genuinely Sindhi community around ourselves. And then I studied abroad and even now I have very few Sindhi contacts. Most of my business associates and customers are Gujaratis. But still if you ask me I’m a true Sindhi at heart, I feel like one and as far as possible I would like to connect with my community, with my roots”.
And what are his views on Sindhis emerging as a world community. “Sindhis do have a wealth of talent but one thing they lack and that is unity. Every group or organization is divided against the other. We Sindhis are few in numbers and we must collect together as one common front. We now have Mr. L.K. Advani and we can work wonders only if we just stick together working for the benefit of the whole community rather than personal gains”.
By now, Mr. Dilip Chhabria is a brand name with an International mark, competing with giants like Ferrari and Rolls Royce. That is the reason when you come to DC with your car, it is just a tin, rubber and glass collection. He writes a poem on it, he adds wings to your wheels, gives it a heartbeat, so that you begin to hum a song, and then the sky seems too close to traverse, and stars are within your reach! Such is the magic of the DC design.
We at Sindhishaan feel really proud and hounoured to have such giants in our community. We wish Mr. Chhabria greater success in his unique, distinct and evocative art.