Meet Jitendra Bhardwaj: The most famous tattoo artist of Nagpur
When it comes to tattoo artists in the city, Jitendra Bhardwaj aka Jitu is undoubtedly the most popular name which comes across. Apart from his skills with the ink, Jitu is also known for his soft spoken and sorted demeanor; his clients will agree. The tattoo artist who has been in the business for more than a decade now, himself sports 7-8 tattoos on his body and is probably the only tattoo artist in Nagpur who has a doctorate degree!
In an interview with Nation Next, Jitendra Bhardwaj talks about his journey as a tattoo artist, his tattoo studio – Exotic Ink Tattoos, precautions necessary while getting inked and tells us why is it important to think twice before getting inked!
Tattoo making was a very rare profession to be in when you entered it in 2003. How did you enter the profession?
While I was studying in KDK College, I got influenced by a friend from Australia who got a temporary tattoo done. I got a temporary tattoo myself and I realised that people took notice of me because of it. My fascination towards tattoos grew with time and I started researching about them. When I started my career as a tattoo artist thirteen years back, there were very few well-known tattoo artists in India and they did not teach the art to anybody easily. After a lot of persuasion one of the tattoo artists agreed to help me. I got trained, came back to Nagpur and made my first tattoo for a model on his back.
When you commenced your business, there weren’t any tattoo parlours in the city and hence the awareness about tattoos was very limited as well. How hard was it for you to set up the business
Initially, I didn’t start it as a business. I got into it because tattoos fascinated me. I operated from random places for two years and then in 2005, I rented a commercial place in Dharampeth opposite Batukbhai Jewellers. I got good clients in Nagpur but I felt like Nagpur restricted my growth because there were very few clients. So, I started traveling to cities like Hyderabad, Bangalore, Surat, Vishakhapatnam, Mumbai and Bhopal. I got work through references. I also had a tattoo studio in Goa for a year and half till 2007. In Goa, there was a lot of work but there was no recognition. After I came back, I started a studio in Ajni at a space of 750 sq.ft. Unfortunately, it didn’t flourish because in 2007 as well, there wasn’t so big a market for tattoos on basis of which I could support my livelihood. Then I shifted my parlour to Khamla square where it is today and I have been here ever since.
Since when do you think, things have been better for your profession in Nagpur?
Over the last five years, the craze for tattoos has grown a lot. Indian films and western sitcoms like LA-ink and Miami-ink have created a lot of awareness about tattoos. There are a lot of youngsters who want to be tattoo artists now because of the awareness. The demand in Nagpur for tattoos is high and it will grow more with time. I have been in the profession for more than a decade now, so I can say that in comparison with the past there’s a lot of work now. Now, I don’t travel much for making tattoos. I only travel for people who have been my clients for long and people who specifically call me after watching my profile.
There’s not a lot of awareness among people about the importance of getting tattoos in a healthy way. Also, some people rush into getting a tattoo?
There’s no awareness at all! Plus, there’s a dearth of knowledge in our industry as well. For instance, a lot of Indians may have demand for coloured tattoos. Now, colour tattoos are not very visible on Indian skin as we are not that fair. Secondly, colour tattoos contain lead and some people may be allergic to lead. Thirdly, colour tattoos cannot be easily removed by laser treatment as compared to a black ink tattoo. Tattoo artists should be free of Hepatitis B and HIV and they should be undergoing regular tests for these. Also, clients should take time to decide whether they really want to get inked or not. Because if you get a tattoo you really didn’t want, you’ll regret it later. Earlier getting a tattoo done was a big thing, five years down the line How good is the tattoo? will matter the most!
You are known for denying to make a tattoo if you don’t feel it appropriate. Also, you try to talk people out if they plan to get tattooed with names of people they love?
People who want to get names tattooed are very excited at first. They have already taken a decision and will not listen to you even if you try to put things in perspective for them. They feel very good when they get the tattoo done but things may change with time, so getting a persons name engraved is really not a good idea. Also, there’s a myth that if you get tattooed with a persons name, the chances of separation increase. So I make sure, whenever I make a tattoo of a persons name, I make it in a way and at a place (Underarms, chest, back) where it can be hidden or covered up if there’s any problem in the future.
You have a doctorate degree as well?
I obtained a doctorate degree in 2013 and the subject of my thesis was spiritual symbols. Spiritual symbols are not associated with any religion. These are symbols which are being used from ancient times. Every symbol means something. In my opinion, whenever you’re making a tattoo, you should keep in mind the positive and negative aspects of it.
You’re quite an adventurer as well. You love exploring jungles and going on long bike trips
I feel like I’m meditating when I’m on adventures. It’s frustrating to work continuously for a month or two. Adventures are a breather of sorts for me. They charge me up again for work. Whenever I visit jungles, I do photography and feel close to the nature. Cultures change at every 100 kms in India and I love exploring these cultures. I have been to Ladakh from Kanyakumari on a bike alone. I have also had a lot of bike trips with my friends and my wife.
Would you say you’re content with the kind of name you have made for yourself in Nagpur?
I have had mental and financial growth because of my profession. My family always supported me and I’m thankful for that. A lot of people are in the profession now. There are professionals who have been my students and charge more than me. Tattoo making has never been a business to me, it’s has been a passion. The rates which I use to charge back when I started, I m charging almost the same rates even today. My clients have increased, so I’m satisfied as I earn more now. I have clients not only in India but in Dubai, US, and other countries who are in regular touch and come to me when they want to get a tattoo done. If somebody comes back to you again, that’s success for you!
‘CBI under UPA govt. pressurised me to frame Modi,’ recalls Amit Shah
Home Minister Amit Shah said the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), under the Congress-led UPA government, tried to pressurise him in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case filed against him when he was the Home Minister of Gujarat.
Shah said the same, in New Delhi on Wednesday, while responding to a question on Opposition’s charge that Prime Minister Narendra Modi government is ‘misusing’ central agencies to target them.
Shah said the CBI tried to put pressure on him to ‘frame’ then Gujarat Chief Minister Modi in the alleged fake encounter case during the Congress government.
Speaking about ex-Congress MP Rahul Gandhi’s conviction in a defamation case by Gujarat Court, Shah said the Congress leader was not the only politician who was convicted by a court and lost membership of the legislature.
Speaking about ‘misuse’ of central agencies, Shah said, “I will tell you how agencies are misused, I have been a victim of it. The Congress did not file a corruption case against us. There was an encounter when I was the home minister of Gujarat. A case was filed against me and the CBI arrested me.”
He added, “In 90% of the questions during my interrogation, I was asked why I was getting bothered and they said they would leave me if I name Narendra Modi. Even then, we did not protest or wear black clothes or stop Parliament’s functioning. An SIT was formed against Modi, which the Supreme Court itself dismissed.”
He concluded by saying, “In my entire interrogation, I was told ‘Modi ka naam de do, de do. But why should I frame him? Today, the same Congress is crying over its fate.”
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RCNV provides sponsorship to 5 children
Under the aegis of Diabetes patronage program at AIIMS, Rotary Club of Nagpur Vision – RCNV – members sponsored five children for this financial year by handing over a cheque of ₹1,25,000 to the Director of AIIMS Maj. Gen (Dr ) Vibha Dutta, SM.
This project takes care of all the needs like insulin, glucometer,special diet and other consumables required by the children suffering from the dreaded and debilitating disease type 1 diabetes.
President Shivani interacted with the authorities and incharge of the project Dr Meenakshi and her team. Joint secretary Dr Akshay Daga interacted with the beneficiary children and their parents exhorting the importance of discipline during the treatment.
President elect Ajay, secretary Ritika and Rtn. Arouni Verma were amongst those who were present at AIIMS, nagpur. Dr Sangeeta and Dr Akash conducted the proceedings. The gratitude felt by the parents and their blessings to our team exemplified the importance of this endeavour in shaping the lives of children suffering from type 1 diabetes.
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DPS MIHAN awarded with Excellence Award | Nagpur
Delhi Public School MIHAN was awarded with the Literary Leadership Excellence Award for the enthusiastic participation of its students in the National Young Authors Fair – the World’s largest Book Writing Competition held by BriBooks and powered by Education World.
More than 90 budding writers of the school availed the benefits of the excellent opportunity provided by the AI-assisted BriBooks platform which helped them to hone their storytelling skills .The plethora of creative designs helped the students to work on the illustrations needed for designing their novel. The pleasure of publishing one’s own novel and reaching out to the global readers was a thrilling experience for the budding authors.
The students also got an exposure to sell the books online and earn Author Royalty as a remuneration. The books published by several DPS MIHAN students have achieved milestones and won rewards in the categories of Best Author – Jury Awards for Content and Creativity, Best Selling Author Awards in the State and Global Feature Awards for International recognition.
The jury and guest list comprised of HE Noor Gilon,Ambassador of Israel, Saul Singer – Author of Best Seller ‘ Start -up Nation’ ,Dele Olojede- Pulitzer prize winner and Navyn Salem- Founder & CEO Edesia.
President and Pro-Vice Chairperson Ms.Tulika Kedia and Director Ms.Savita Jaiswal have congratulated the Principal Ms.Nidhi Yadav, staff and students for their sincere efforts to achieve this recognition.
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