More than $690K for the Indian Prime Minister's suit

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's dark pinstriped suit with his name monogrammed in gold stripes ignited social media.

Story highlights

  • Proceeds of the auction go toward cleaning of India's holy river
  • The suit is considered one of the world's most expensive

New Delhi (CNN)A diamond merchant has plunked down $691,890 to buy India's most famous suit.

The suit owned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi got tongues wagging when he wore it to a meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama last month.
    Dubbed one of the world's most expensive suits, it sold at an auction Friday. It cost a cool 43.1 million rupees, Surat District Magistrate Rajender Kumar said.
    The suit is a popular icon. In addition to belonging to Modi, it had his name embroidered in golden pinstripe all over it.
    That had the whole nation cackling about an outrageous fashion faux pas. Wearing it while meeting Obama made the sartorial choice even more provocative.
    This close-up shows the details of the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's suit bearing his own name.
    Opposition leaders accused him of being narcissistic, one politician even labeled him a "megalomaniac." Much of the Indian public wasn't too pleased either, questioning his image of a humble man he proudly portrayed during the 2014 general elections.
    The infamous monogrammed suit went on auction with bidders from all over the country tussling for the prized possession.
    Its original price was U.S.$16,084 - and officials expected it to shoot up into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
    The proceeds of this year's auction are supposed to go toward Modi's ambitious pet project of cleaning India's holy river, the Ganges.
    The suit was just one of the 455 items up for grabs. Other items include gifts and mementos that Modi received from foreign dignitaries and national leaders.
    According to organizers, the auction which is being held in Modi's home state of Gujarat has been extremely successful.
    "There is a lot of interest among the general public, and we are seeing multiple bids for a lot of items," Kumar said.
    Modi held similar auctions when he was the chief minister of Gujarat and raised funds for the education of young girls in the state.