`Dushman, Maine Pyar Kiya': The 5000 + timeless fashion trends of Hyderabad's Mohammed Cap Mart

It was way back in 1902 that Peer Mohammed founded the cap shop. It was the time when everyone wore some cap or the other – no matter which religion they belonged to. Nobody stepped out of home bare headed those days. Both the 6th Nizam, Mir Mehboob Ali Khan and his son, the last Nizam, Mir Osman Ali Khan, wore red Rumi Topi – also called ‘fez’ and a Turkish cap. They were a bit short in height and therefore went for 6-inch high Rumi Topi so that when they interacted with foreign dignitaries they could look them straight in the eye. The Salar Jungs sported elegant sherwanis and dastars (headgear).

By J.S. Ifthekhar  Published on  13 Aug 2022 5:00 AM GMT
`Dushman, Maine Pyar Kiya: The 5000 + timeless fashion trends of Hyderabads Mohammed Cap Mart

Hyderabad: Caps never go out of style. So is the Mohammed Cap Mart (MCM). Whatever be the occasion, you get here the cap that fits your personality. Be it the traditional baseball cap, beanies, visors, bucket cap, safari cap, Rampuri cap, Jinnah cap, Afghani cap, Omani cap, Sudani cap, Shergola cap, embroidered cap, designer Rumi topi, graduation cap, police cap or the cowboy hats. You name it, MCM has it. With 5000 varieties of caps to choose from one is really spoiled for choice here.

In its 120th year, the MCM still remains the first choice of people looking for novel headgear. Recently when there was a marriage in a certain Sexena family in the old city, a problem arose as the old 'Gundi cap' was found to have developed wear and tear. There is a tradition in this family for bridegrooms to don the Gundi cap on the D-Day. The family immediately got in touch with Ilyas Bukhari, the MCM proprietor. And within no time the cap was fixed and the groom rode happily in the baraat with head held high.

This hoary mart at Patharghatti, the heart of the Old City, is a one-stop-shop for all headwear needs. Be it a religious programme you want to attend, a traditional marriage function, sports event or just want to imitate your favourite hero – MCM is the right place. Some people have a fetish for hats and go on a collecting spree. The Jewel Thief cap of Dev Anand was a rage in the 60s and so was the Nepali cap donned by Rajesh Khanna in the film Dushman. Bukhari recalls selling thousands of those caps.

Even now youngsters drop in here looking for Salman Khan's cap of Maine Pyar Kiya and caps of other Bollywood celebrities like Ranbir Kapoor, Hrithik Roshan, Amitabh Bachan. There is a demand for our own Hyderabadi star – Gullu Dada cap too.

Want to get outfitted with the right headgear there is no place better than the MCM. There are caps and caps of all shapes and sizes here. A crochet cap costing just Rs. 60 to a leather cap worth Rs. 75,000 – the price range and variety is really wide. If you want custom made hats with a corporate logo imprinted, MCM is game for that too.

Hats off to Ilyas Bukhari, the MCM keeps pace with the latest trends in headwear. When election comes the MCM becomes a beehive of activity. Not just caps, it provides T-shirts, flags, kanduvas and buntings for all major political parties. On the street the rival party candidates may be at each other's throat, but they all drop in at MCM for their electioneering needs. Bukhari never lets them down. He engages extra hands for manufacture of the election material.


It was way back in 1902 that Peer Mohammed founded the cap shop. It was the time when everyone wore some cap or the other – no matter which religion they belonged to. Nobody stepped out of home bare headed those days. Both the 6th Nizam, Mir Mehboob Ali Khan and his son, the last Nizam, Mir Osman Ali Khan, wore red Rumi Topi – also called 'fez' and a Turkish cap. They were a bit short in height and therefore went for 6-inch high Rumi Topi so that when they interacted with foreign dignitaries they could look them straight in the eye. The Salar Jungs sported elegant sherwanis and dastars (headgear).

A sign of aristocracy and Hyderabadi tehzeeb, the Rumi Topi has not lost its charm at all. Rather it has made a comeback. Of late youngsters can be seen making a style statement with it. There is a story about how Rumi Topi connotes different things depending on the way one wears it. If you keep its phunna (tassel) at the back it means you are a serious dignified man. If the cap is worn at a rakish angle it indicates the wearer is an unmarried guy, looking for fun, says Bukhari.

The MCM was originally situated at Machili Kaman near Charminar before it shifted to its present premises near the Taj Building in 1939. And today it has evolved into an iconic shop spread over 35,000 sq.ft. The four-storeyed departmental store offers different products on each floor. Bukhari always has his thinking cap on. Although caps is his USP, he has not confined himself to just that.

Over the years he has diversified his business offering a comprehensive range of goods and services all under one roof. From caps, to prayer rugs, school bags, jackets, carpets, home furnishings, ethnic wear, rainy wear and Haj 'ihram' – there is a mindboggling variety of products one can pick up here.

Initially along with Ilyas Bukhari his three other brothers – Ayub Bukhari, Yunus Bukhari and Yousuf Bukhari were all in the same trade. But their father, Mohammad Yakub Bukhari, handed over the MCM to Ilyas Bukhari as he believed he would take it to greater heights.


The latter lived up to the expectations and added many new products to the cap shop. In 2015 he opened an exclusive ethnic wear for the modern man under the brand – Jahanpanah. Today it has 29 branches in the twin cities and other parts of Telangana. Jahanpanah has its footprints in Bangalore, Pune, Chennai, Vishakapatnam and Vijayawada too. Another showroom is in the offing at Behrampur in Orissa. His two sons, Ishaq Bukhari and Ibrahim Bukhari look after the Jahanpanah clothing line.

Bukhari wears many hats. In the last two decades he has specialised in the sale of velvety prayer mats. Come Ramzan a month long exhibition cum sale of imported prayer mats is unveiled. One can pick up the best of prayer mats from Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Belgium at prices that are not heavy on the pocket. "One can offer 'namaz' on the same type of rugs that are laid in the grand mosques at Makkah and Madinah", says Bukhari.

From a minimum of Rs. 40 a sq. ft to Rs. 200, the 'musallas' are available in different price ranges. Not just Ramzan, in other seasons also the devout head to MCM for prayer rugs for their home and local mosques. A good number of NRIs also donate them to mosques in the name of their departed parents. There is no cap on his creativity and passion. In recent times Bukhari has made MCM a hub for sale of Ihram, the unstitched two-piece cloth for Haj and Umra pilgrims. Not just this, he is also providing articles needed for pilgrims who undertake the Badrinath yatra.


Twenty five different items like bag, gloves, socks, jacket, caps come in a kit costing Rs. 4500. This is not all. One can also shop here for colourful abayas, quality rainwear and winter jackets. From as little as Rs. 750 to Rs. 3500, they are available in different styles and designs. To mark the 75th year of India's Independence, the MCM has decided to offer a 10 percent discount on a wide range of its products.

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