Hungama Hai Kyun Barpa..

Main Teri Mast Nigahi Ka Bharam Rakh Lungaa,
Hosh Ayaa Bhi To Keh Dunga Mujhe Hosh Nahi
Ye Alag Baat Hai Saki Ke Mujhe Hosh Nahi
Varna Main Khucch Bhi Hu Ahsaan Faramosh Nahi

Old Trafford, Manchester, England 2019

Tensions were high, mood was exhilarating, after all it was a India Pakistan encounter at a World Cup match. Indo-Pak match especially in a World Cup is always a high voltage encounter, and is billed as the most important match of the championship, as important as the championship itself. The tickets at the stadium are sold within a matter of few minutes when they are up for grabs. You don’t wanna loose to your archrivals, no matter what, after all its about national pride. It’s probably more than just another cricket match because stakes are high and the intense rivalries between these two sporting nations who shared a common cricketing heritage, makes for a great spectacle.

Pakistan won the toss and chose to field. India opened their innings with Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul. Mohammed Amir and Wahab Riaz were steaming in to start the proceedings for Pakistan.After a steady start seeing off the opening spell and not loosing early wickets, India put up a century opening partnership. Rohit went from strength to strength to hammer a handsome century accompanied by skipper Virat Kohli with a fine half century.With their major contribution, India went on to post a solid 336/5 in their 50 overs. In the 2nd innings, India suffered a big blow when their star bowler Bhuvaneshwar Kumar got injured, Vijay Shankar came in to bowl and produced a wicket in his very first ball to everyone’s surprise.Later on, the opener Fakar Zaman and their best batsman Babar Azam steadied the ship with a century partnership and looked well on course to chase the record score.

When everything looked on track for Pakistan, Babar got deceived by a magical ball from Kuldeep Yadav, the chinaman, and match turned on its head. Mind you, Pakistan had never won a world cup encounter against India since 1992, during their first meeting. This was their chance to get the monkey off the back, but they failed and failed miserably. After the century stand, they lost wickets in flurry and though it started raining they were well short of India’s score as per target set by DLS method and had to concede a defeat.

It was euphoria for Indian camp and misery for Pakistan. Their misery, very well described by a emotional fan after the match, an unbeatable reaction. Have a look and enjoy ๐Ÿ˜›

A group of friends were enjoying the match from a sports bar with a near stadium like atmosphere. As it happens more often in a sports bar, fans and supporters from both the team were present. Needless to say, it was a noisy atmosphere throughout the match duration. If Pakistan scored a boundary or a six, Pak fans would get up from their seat and cheer mocking Indian fans and likewise when India did well, they would cheer along and scream at the top of their voice-Mauka Mauka song from popular advertisement created by Star Sports India in the context of Pakistan’s losing streak in all World cup matches against India.

It was field day for the bar owner and his concierge, to control the crowd if they went overboard. Food & Liquor Consumption for the day were on a record high due to such a high voltage match, but managing the patrons was a pain in the a**. It often led to brawls when one party started abusing and physically assaulting other party. One had to closely monitor and prevent any altercations as much as possible. That’s when everyone’s revelry was interrupted by a gang of friends. 2 person from two different groups were arguing and abusing each other over some trivial matter. It seemed they were not in their senses and one guy suddenly started to hit the other and damage the property in utmost recklessness. Distracted crowd at the bar started looking out for them when the scuffle started trying to figure out what the fuss was all about. Some of their other friends who had accompanied them, tried to control them by holding them back,but in vain. The bar owner accompanied by 2-3 bartenders held them by collar and asked them to move out of the bar, when one guy pushed the owner, slapped him hard abusing him and started arguing with him. When things got ugly, the hotel staff called the police.

The guys looked innocent and completely out of their senses. On seeing police there, they somewhat started becoming their usual self and started pleading that it was a mistake. In such a panic situation, when police questioned why all this a hungama over such a trivial matter, The guy blurted out suddenly..

Hungama Hai Kyun Barpa (with a burp as he said this), Thodi Si Jo Pii Lii Hai(drunk man never agrees he is intoxicated & out of his senses, isn’t it?)
Daakaa Toh Nahin Daalaa Chori Toh Nahi Kii Hai !!!??!!???

After all, he was such a good bathroom singer, atleast he thought so. The police looked part confused, part shocked and was trying to control his reactions to this impromptu act. Eventually, he took him to the custody to which the guy secretly started to tick a bucket list item, in his mind- Spending a night in a jail cell.

Until next time, be well & take it easy.

P. S: Take a look at a beautiful rendition of Hungama Hai Kyun Barpa by Ghazal maestro Ghulam Ali

P.P.S:

Masti Ki Paathshaala..

Circa 1997

A transition from high school to college beckoned!!

A move from academic to a more professional choice; which would most likely dictate the career path one would take. At the start of academic year, we were told SSC(10th Grade) was vital, now that we were done with high school, Class XII results was touted as the turning point of one’s career. It was like stretching the goal post of a football stadium by several notches once we passed through previous goal post. But for us, college sounded liberating. It invoked more freedom, you do as you feel like, you bunk classes you feel like, & you wear what you feel like; oh no; we were subjected to a uniform here as well. And we had to grapple with coaching classes as well to somehow inflate the marks during the boards. So college was more of a formality to maintain minimum attendance.

We did our college in a temple town of Sirsi in hilly Malenadu(region of Karnataka comprising of eastern and western slopes of Western ghats/Sahyadri mountain range). Year on year, it recorded moderate to high rainfall and was known for its chilly weather throughout the year especially winters. It was blessed with serene lake in the middle of the city & was surrounded with several pristine waterfalls amidst lush green forests.Agriculture was main occupation of majority of people and they indulged in growing rice, arecanut, black pepper & vanilla. It was ideal place for tourists especially for city folks to visit historical places, hike mountains, enjoy a peaceful & a pleasant weather throughout their stay typically in a village homestay beside areca plantations.

Owing to more commercial activities and agricultural trade, many shops and establishments were springing up now and then. There were quite a few popular restaurants; one of them oldest among all at the city centre famous for its lip-smacking masala dosa. A new one opened up just opposite our college campus with an interesting name as “The Chinese Corner“. Chinese food was such a fad then. Everyone loved the Indian version of Chinese in the form of Hakka Noodles, Gobi Manchurian & Fried Rice. And they had open kitchen wherein one could see the preparation all along. The chef with a white apron with a matching head cap was nothing short of a magician of gastronomical proportions, wherein he would churn delicacies one after another with his quick hands. The way he used to toss the noodles with all the raw veggies flying perfectly in sync bringing time to a standstill, was a sight to behold. It’s ideal location just opposite the college made it a thriving business bustling with activities especially during evening hours. It also became a great hang out place for guys to take their girl-friends after bunking their classes.

Arul was Mr. Popular of our class with his swag always ON no matter the situation. Even when he got a lashing from the lecturer his confidence was intact & one to envy. Once, he had driven his Yamaha RX100 straight onto the college corridor with college principal fuming with rage. He had to punish him in some way and instead of temporary suspension (which he thought would act like a chill pill) he thought of asking him to do gardener duties at the college portico for a whole week to which Arul responded and obeyed without a care in the world. He captained the college cricket team to victory against the archrivals from another college by hitting a flamboyant half century and clinching two vital wickets.And his team celebrated by carrying him on their shoulders across the whole college and of course the corridor. Needless to say, he was very popular among girls too. Whenever he asked any girl out, they always answered in affirmative.

One evening, I was out with my friends near the chai tapri and savouring adrak chai when I spotted Arul taking the most beautiful girl of our college towards The Chinese Corner. I envied him then and there, he had the charisma which I lacked. Just other day, he was enjoying a nice cuppa with The Senior, yeah another pretty lass. I had to do something, I needed some start and some luck. That’s when, about a week later, I was loitering around The Chinese corner wishing a delightful company, the cool dude Arul came from nowhere and spotted me. Upon seeing him, I  was startled and started sheepingly staring at him. He fully understood my intentions, God knows how. He pitifully looked at me and said, don’t laze around here like this- Go inside and ask the waiter for Chitra. Chitra? Yes, She is owner’s daughter & would like to talk to cool dudes if she is free, I bet, you will love it. On first instance, I didn’t understood how to react, at my fate and with all my might, lunged into the restaurant with some flourish thanking Arul along the way.

I occupied the middle seat and started looking around the restaurant nervously. The hotel owner started staring me in some unusual way twirling his moustache adding to more nervousness. I looked sideways avoiding his glare and started thinking- What a name? Chitra, meaning picture or a drawing. Did the owner name her picking up from the famous telly show Chitrahaar, or did he like the “Kehna Hi Kya” fame, singer K.S.Chitra of the film Bombay. I couldn’t decide, when much to my relief, the waiter on seeing me, moved towards me bringing in some water and asking me Kya Chahiye Saheb? That’s when, with all the confidence I blurted out without thinking- Bring Chitra. Suddenly, panic struck me and I started sweating profusely. What if, the waiter and the owner takes some offence and beat me up physically? It would be such a embarrassing moment. Should I run? That’s when the waiter responded with a tone of cheerful acquiescence, Chitra? and went in. Just when I was thinking about my next move, how will I approach Chitra, what will I greet and talk to her, what if she slaps me? the waiter dashed outside and slammed on my table a bottle of Citra, popular lemon flavored carbonated drink. I sipped the drink with a straw in no time and since then never visited the resto again.

Until next time, Don’t forget to have some masti while moving ahead with your work.

filtercoffee

Kaapi Tales..

Circa 2005: In lush green ๐ŸŒฒ๐ŸŒณenvirons of Malleshwaram, one of the oldest & liveliest neighborhood of Bengaluru,I was wandering around 18th Cross Sampige Road (or Champaca flower, the street name derived from sampige trees which lined up the street, their lush canopy, providing fragrant, shady & much needed respite from the heat) for counseling to select a seat for my undergrad. It was Day 1 and the seat selection started bit late after all the proceedings and keynote speech to mark the start of new academic year. Accompanied with my dad, we had a quick breakfast where we were stayingย at our relative’s place in Laggere & headed to counseling in Malleshwaram. It was well past 3 PM when we were done with our seat selection, satisfied with the day’s events. It was time for an elaborate lunch or rather a brunch. An eatery nearby caught our attention which was thronged by people at the roadside. The taste of Rava Masala Dosa which I ordered from that Darshini, still lingers on my mind and over the years have loved the preparation and taste of this Delicious Dosa. Does any dish evoke such emotions in you? Do share if any ๐Ÿ˜› if you had any such gastronomical delights.๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿฅฃ Isn’t it strange that, a memorable taste from a delicacy had sometime in the past, evokes so many wonderful memories? Food for thought, isn’t it?

Pudi Dosa & Coconut Chutney

So what are Darshinis, which Bengaluru is known for? and How did it come into being? Let’s delve into some history and interesting nuggets about Darshini (that which is visible). It is attributed to a gentleman Mr. Prabhakar who is known as ideas๐Ÿ’กman. Many of the hoteliers owe a great deal to him which changed the face of Bengaluru food scene big time. Under Prabhakar’s direction, Bengaluru got its first Cafe Darshini in Jayanagar in 1983 and now there are darshinis at every roadside and very much part of day-to-day life. It has modern kitchen machinery like wet grinders visible to customers from outside. One has to buy a token from the counter(pay-first-eat-later) and hand it over to kitchen staff. There are limited items in the menu- idli, vada, dosa varieties like masala dosa, set dosa, khaali dosa, rava dosa, kharabath(upma), bisibele bath(hot lentils rice dish originated from Karnataka), kesaribath(a sweet preparation from ghee and semolina or rice), chow chow bath(a scoop of kharabath & kesaribath) accompanied with tea and coffee. There is no furniture other than few, elbow-high pole with small round tabletop, used to eat standing. The only staff is a cleaning boy, who wipes tabletop as soon as customers leave. In a way, darshinis are a great leveler, that brings in people from all walks of life to enjoy a tasty and healthy breakfast without any special treatment in terms of service.

Inspiration: It so happened Mr. Prabhakar tagged along with his friend to Singapore for a business assignment. There he understood the market of fast food and was exposed to ideas like takeaways, minimalist but wholesome meals, payment at the counter and thus eliminating the need of waiters. He got so much inspired from the idea that he Indianized it to address and promote South Indian fare.ย It derives from Brahmin Satvik Tradition from South Canara region of Karnataka especially Kundapura-Udupi region. Udupi hotel in many parts of India is synonymous to South Indian hotel thanks to enterprising individuals from that region who specialized in showcasing culinary delight of South India whether it’s idli, dosa, coconut chutney and of course the coffee. Some of prominent Darshini/coffee chains have stood with test of time and earned the love of patrons over the years. Brahmins Coffee bar, By Two Coffeeย in Basavanagudi, Mavalli Tiffin Room popularly known as MTRย opposite LalBagh, Taza Thindi in Jayanagar, Veena Stores & CTR in Malleshwaram to name a few.ย ๐Ÿ›๐Ÿ˜‹

Masala Dosa from Mavalli Tiffin Rooms- MTR, Lalbagh Road

Back story: Madhwacharya, a 13th Century saint from Udupi(temple town in coastal Karnataka), who founded the Dvaita school of philosophy established 8 Brahmin mutts and laid emphasis on developing a school of cooking strictly adhering to sattvik tradition. Many Brahmins from this region took to cooking as a profession and later distinguished themselves in running hotels & restaurants. Some of them dominated the business like Adigas, Maiyas, Bhats, Raos etc and set up shops in many cities.

Set Dosa

Pakashastra, the science of cooking had an elaborate structure to set up food. Its said that around 48 unique items should be cooked everyday as Lord Krishna’s neivedyam. The main segments of this rather elaborate spread consisted of five sweets, five payasams, five rassa (sambar, rasam), five fried items, five unboiled items(like salads), five anna(rice items),five vyanjana(pickles, papads) & five jeernakara(herbal chutneys-digestives). These were not to be repeated each day leading to innovation & food improvisation. Since all the preparations was meant to please the Lord, it made use of best of ingredients, cooking practices & highest level of hygiene.

Bisi Bele Bath(Hot lentils rice bath) from Veena Stores, Malleshwaram

The Legendary Mavalli Tiffin Rooms(MTR) is operating since 1920s. Very well known for its one-of-a-kind Masala Dose & Filter Kaapi, it’s said once Chief Minister of Karnataka stood in queue to savor it’s Masala Dosa. During second World War, when rice was in short supply, they experimented with semolina instead of rice to invent Rava Idli. During Emergency, the restaurant had to be closed leading it to reinvent and move into instant food business, a turning point.

Bubbling with energy, Filter Kaapi from MTR

In those days, Udupi in South Canara was part of Madras Presidency, Woodlands and Dasaprakash was established in Madras which became iconic symbols of fine South Indian cuisine. Basavanagudi in Bengaluru was later the focus of attention to Udupi’s entrepreneurs which led to establishment of Vidhyarthi Bhavan, Brahmins Coffee bar & later outlets like By 2 Coffee based on economy of scale-modest per customer income, minimal items, highest quality, consistent taste and hence largest footfall. Veena Stores & Central Tiffin Room(CTR) was setup in Malleshwaram.

Butter Masala Dosa

In 1990s, Mr. Prabhakar came up with an idea of Bharjari oota in Gandhinagar, a Mysore styled spread of unlimited rice,curries,rasam,chutney,buttermilk along with an MTR softee icecream(to promote new Softee brand ๐Ÿฆ) all for an incredibly low price of โ‚น10 which led to traffic snarls. Later he came up with an idea to sell food by weight owing to large demands by office going people which needed high quality food for their staff. Even today, such outlets exists and ever since has been a savior for many bachelors and students.

One of the SLV Darshini
Vidyarthi Bhavan, Gandhi Bazaar, Basavanagudi

India’s tryst with Coffee is said to have in early 17th century when Baba Budan, a saint, is said to have smuggled seven coffee beans from present-day Yemen while returning from Hajj in Mecca. He hid the coffee beans in his beard and planted them in the Chandragiri Hills of the Chikkamagaluru district, where they soon flourished. Britishers commercialized its production by establishing large coffee plantations in Coorg, Wayanad and other regions. In Southern Indian household, coffee soon became a necessity in around 19th century where they started brewing coffee with milk, mixed with jaggery/honey for sweetness. With the advent of coffee houses like Indian Coffee House, coffee spread to northern parts of India too.โ˜•

Bonda Soup

In 1990s, Cafe Coffee Day(CCD) was one of popular hangout coffee shops which popularized coffee all over India. Its success is attributed to V.G. Siddhartha who inherited acres of coffee farms in Chikkamagaluru(Land of Coffee in India). He linked coffee and technology and started CCD, a coffee chain, first established in Brigade Road, Bengaluru in 1996. It was meant for customers to sit and surf the internet while enjoying their coffee; hence the name Cafe Coffee Day.The brainchild to provide customers with free internet, a novelty in the country then, is among the innovations that set CCD on its path to emerge the top player of coffee chains all over India. With teenagers as a primary customer, it came up with a tag line “A lot can happen over a cup of coffee” which became a go to place to hangout.๐Ÿฅคโ˜•๐Ÿต๐Ÿฅช๐Ÿช๐Ÿฉ

Filter Kaapi

That brings us to an end of this foodgasmic tale.Hope you liked this distilled version, a concoction served hot & fresh ๐Ÿ˜›

Until next time, Be Good, Eat Good, Feel Good. Bon Appรฉtit!!

References: Askew by T.J.S George

The Antakshari project..

Antakshari!! Woah, this single word evokes so much emotions. ๐Ÿ˜

From the time, Zee TV aired CloseUp-Antakshari, it has become household name and one of the favorite pass times ever since. ๐ŸŽค

For the uninitiated, Antakshari is a spoken parlor game played in India. Each contestant sings the first verse of a song (often Bollywood songs) that begins with the Hindustani Consonant on which the previous contestant’s song selection ended.

Now some Trivia, Antakshari was originally present in the Ramayana, where rishis (sages) sang the first verses of bhajanas continuously by singing another Bhajana beginning with the last letter of the ending word.If you wanna jog your memory, you must have remembered one of the longest run musical show in Indian TV industry aired by Zee ๐Ÿ“บ- Antakshari starting from 1994. It was hosted by ever so energetic and a music aficionado- Mr. Annu Kapoor along with female co-host and fellow melophiles like Renuka Shahane, Pallavi Joshi, Rajeshwari Sachdev , Richa Sharma and others.

Trivia: Annu Kapoor changed his name from Anil Kapoor to Annu Kapoor to avoid confusion with the hero of the popular film Tezaab. So, were you Deewane, Parwane ya Mastane it didn’t matter, it was entertainment all the way of highest order.

Hum the woh thi aur sama rangeen Samaj gayena

Jate they Japan pahoonch gaye Cheen Samaj gayena

Yane yane pyaar ho gaya

Oo Annu tera hua Ab mera kya hoga,Oo Annu tera hua Ab mera kya hoga?? ๐ŸŽท๐ŸŽธ๐ŸŽน๐Ÿฅ


Amidst national wide lockdown due to COVID19, Various popular Brands were homebound and decided to play Antakshari over a video call to share their thoughts on this prevailing situation. ๐Ÿ“บ๐Ÿฟ๐Ÿ›‹๏ธ It was one of a kind and unprecedented. Cant wait, isn’t it, of what’s in store. So without further ado, lets tune in to their conversation through songs.

Disclaimer: No offence meant to any brands, companies & people around, fictitiously written for fun ๐Ÿ™‚

Baithe baithe kya kare, karna hai kuch kaam. Shuru karo Antakshri leke COVID ka naam. เคฎ…


เคฎ, Ma.. ๐Ÿš–๐Ÿš•๐Ÿš™๐Ÿš— OLA: Mujhko kya hua hai,Kyun Main Kho Gaya hoon. Paagal tha Main Pehle, Ya ab Ho gaya hoon; Koi mil gaya(COVID), Koi mil gaya, Mera Dil gaya Kya Bataoon yaaron; Kya bataoon yaaron; Main to hil gaya, Main to hil gaya. เคฏ..


เคฏ, Ya.. ๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ“žโ˜Ž๐ŸŽž๐ŸŽฅ๐Ÿ’ฐ JIO(garnering attention of so much funding across various business houses & venture capitalists): Yahan ke hum sikandar, Chaahein to rakh lein sab ko apni jeb ke andar, Arre humse bachke rehna mere yaar, Nahin samjhe hai vo humein to kya jaata hai,Haari baazi ko jeetna humein aata hai. Hey vo sikandar hi doston kehlaata hai, Haari baazi ko jeetna jise aata hai, Niklenge maidan mein jis din hum jhoomke, Dharti dolegi ye kadam choomke. Jo sab karte hain yaaron vo kyon hum tum karein, Yoonhi kasrat karte karte kaahe ko hum marein;Gharwaalon se teacher se bhala hum kyon darein; Yahan ke hum sikandar.. เคฐ..


เคฐ, ra.. โœˆ๐Ÿ›ซ๐Ÿ›ฌ Indigo: Raat Kali Ek Khwaab Mein Aayi.aur Gale Ka Haar Hui; Subah Ko Jab Hum Neend Se Jaage; Aankh Tumhise Chaar Hui; Raat Kali Ek Khwaab Mein Aayi.aur Gale Ka Haar Hui; Yeh Kya Hua Mujhe Mujhko Khabar Nahin,Ho Sake Tum Hi Bata Do,Tumne(COVID) Kadam Jo Rakha Zameen Par,Seene Mein Kyun Jhankar Hui; Raat Kali Ek Khwaab Mein Aayi.aur Gale Ka Haar Hui.. เคฏ..


เคฏ, Ya.. ๐Ÿ“ฑ๐Ÿ“ธ๐ŸŽฅ๐ŸŽž Tiktok(on getting banned due to nationwide outrage): Yeh jo mohabbat hai yeh unka hai kaam;Arre mehboob ka jo bas lete hue naam,Mar jaayein, Mit jaayein ho jaayein Badnaam; Rehne do, chhodo bhi jaane do yaar,Hum na karenge pyaar…Rehne do chhodo bhi Jaane do yaar hum na karenge pyaar;Toote agar saagar naya saagar koi lele,Mere khuda dil se koi kisi ke na khele,Dil toot jaaye to kya ho anjaam…เคฎ…


เคฎ, Ma.. (Xiaomi ๐Ÿ“ฑ๐Ÿ“ฒ Phones, on negative publicity, being highest sold mobile phone brand In India) Mere Mehboob Qayamat Hogi; Aaj Rusva Teri Galiyon Mein Mohabbat Hogi,Meri Nazrein To Gila Karti Hain;Tere Dil Ko Bhi Sanam Tujhse Shikayat Hogi;Mere Mehboob. เคฌ..

เคฌ, Ba.. ๐ŸŽ๐Ÿฅ—๐Ÿงบ BigBasket(Encouraging people to buy more veggies & fruits from them amidst lockdown): Bahut shukriya badi meherbani;Meri zindagi me hujur aap aaye, Kadam chum lun yaKe aankhe bicha du; Karun kya yeh meri; Samaj me na aaye; Bahut shukriya!! เคฏ..


เคฏ, Ya.. ๐Ÿข๐Ÿฅฃ๐Ÿ•๐Ÿค๐Ÿœ๐ŸSwiggy(on their customers who got discouraged ordering their food from favorite restaurants) : Yaad aa rahi hai, Yaad aa rahi hai; Teri yaad aa rahi hai, teri yaad aa rahi hai, Yaad aane se, tere jaane se; Jaan jaa rahi hai; Pehle yeh naa jaana,Tere baad yeh jaana pyaar mein; Jeena mushkil kardega; Yeh dil deewana pyaar mein,Jaane kaise saans yeh aise; Aa jaa rahi hai, Yaad aa rahi hai, teri yaad aa rahi hai. เคน ..


เคน, Ha... ๐ŸŽฅ๐Ÿ“ž๐ŸŽž๐ŸŽ™Zoom (on security concerns amidst growing nationwide outrage): Haan main galat,Galat meri baatein Galati se hi duniya bani;Poora sahi koi nahin hai,Le le meri chetaavani;O ho ho.. Dil mein aayeO ho ho.. Aaj ho jaayeO ho ho.. Dil mein aayeO ho ho.. Aaj ho jaaye, Aa stage laga hai badi jagah hai. Do it with a twist… เคŸ..


เคŸ,Ta ๐Ÿ“ฑ๐Ÿ“ฒ๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿ’กGoogle (on being seamless & a constant companion & provide all answers instantly to life’s burning questions) : Tere hawale hai yeh zindagi meri, tere ujale se sab raahe hain yaha; apne naseeb ka mai badshah nahi, tu meri shaam hain, tu hi meri subah; tune kaha maine sunn liaa, tune kaha maine, sunn lia; Phikar ke din, aur raatein; dhaal gaya suraj kaha,Phizool ki thi baatein, kho gaye the hum jane kaha;Tune kaha maine sunn liaa; tune kaha maine, sunn lia; Rozana meri toh hain daasatan nayi phurze poorane hain par shock hain kayi taaro ki roshani ne dikhaya raasta
par mai mukal gaya tu sath joh yahi
tune kaha maine sunn liaa
tune kaha maine, sunn lia
tune kaha maine sunn liaa. เคฏ..

เคฏ, Ya.. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿš๐Ÿจ๐Ÿ’’๐ŸซAirbnb(shocked to see whole business model upside down): Yeh Kya hua, Kaise hua, Kab hua
Kyon hua, Jab hua, tab hua
Oh chodo, Yeh na socho Yeh kya hua..เคต..

เคต,Va..๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿ“ฑ๐Ÿ“ท Facebook(on being a constant companion in boredom): Waada Karle Saajna; Tere Bin Main Na Rahun,
Mere Bin Tu Na Rahe, Hoke Judaa,
Yeh Vaada Rahaa
Naa Honge Juda,
Yeh Vadaa Rahaa เคน ..

เคน, Ha... ๐Ÿ’ป๐ŸŽฅ๐Ÿ“ฝ๐Ÿ“žZoom: Hum bewafa hargiz na the
Par hum wafa kar naa sake
Humko mili uski sazaa
Hum jo khata kar naa sake
Hum bewafa hargiz na the
Par hum wafa kar naa sake.. เค•..

Jiomeet interrupts Zoom & says Zoom barabar Zoom, Zoom barabar Zoom..

เค•, Ka..๐Ÿ“๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿ˜ WFH Employees: Kya kare kya na kare yeh kaisi mushkil hai
Koi to bataa de iska hal o mere bhai
Ke ek taraf to us se pyaar kare hum
Aur usko inhe kehney se daray hum. เคฎ…

เคฎ, Ma.. ๐Ÿ“ฑ๐Ÿ“ฒ๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿ“ธ๐ŸŽ™๐Ÿ“žโ˜ŽJioMeet(on acquiring new customers, more downloads in less time): Mere Gully Mein gully gully gully mein
Tere shootero ka khaas meri gully mein
Pure shehar ki awaaz mere gully mein; Mere Gully Mein gully gully gully mein
Police aayi lagi waat mere gully mein
Ek number saari batth mere gully mein เคฎ…

เคฎ, Ma.. ๐ŸŽท๐Ÿฅ๐ŸŽน๐ŸŽผ๐ŸŽธ๐ŸŽบSpotify(on their ad campaign- There’s a playlist for that): Main koi aisa geet gaoon
Ki aarzoo jagaoon
Main koi aisa geet gaoon
Ki aarzoo jagaoon
Agar tum kaho.. เคน ..

เคน,Ha..๐Ÿ ๐Ÿก๐Ÿ˜๐ŸจOYO (on huge losses & no demand) : Hum toh udd gaye jab tum jhuke,
Tab se tum nazar mein aa ruke,
Hum toh ho gaye zaman,
Dheere dheere maala maal,
Ab toh hona hai wohi jo banaye jahan,
Hum toh ho gaye zaman,
Dheere dheere maala maal,
Ab toh hona hai wohi jo banaye jahan,
Hum toh udd gaye udd gaye udd gaye.

By this time,other brands who didnt get a chance to speak, got frustrated & started singing their own songs, sharing their thoughts ๐Ÿ˜›

๐Ÿ”๐ŸŒฎ๐Ÿฅ—๐ŸŸ๐ŸŒฎMc Donald: Dheere Dheere Se Meri Zindagi Mein Aana;Dheere Dheere Se Dil Ko Churaana;Tum Se Pyaar Humein Hai Kitna Jaane Jaana,Tumse Milkar Tumko Hai Bataana

Doordarshan ๐Ÿ“บ๐Ÿ’ป(on record viewership on telecast of Ramayana & Mahabharat) : Dekh Le Aakhon Main Aakhen Daal; Seekh Le Har Pal Main Jeena Yaar,
Soch Le Jeevan Ke Pal Hain Char; Yaad Rakh; Marna Hai Ek Baar, Marne Se Pahle Jeena
Seekh Le..

Whatsapp: ๐Ÿ“ฑ๐Ÿ“ฒ๐Ÿ“ท๐Ÿ“ธ๐Ÿ“žโ˜Ž Oh bar bar dekho hazar Baar bar dekho
Key dekh ne kee chij hai hamaree dilruba,
Talee ho, talee ho, talee ho
Han jee han aur bhee honge dildar yaha, lakho dilo kee bahar yaha
Par yeh bat kaha,

Netflix: ๐Ÿฟโ˜•๐Ÿ“บTumko dekha toh yeh khayal aaya; Zindagi dhoop tum Ghana saaya.
Tumko dekha toh yeh khayal aaya,Aaj phir dilne ik tamanna ki,Aaj phir dilko humne samjhaya; Zindagi dhoop tum Ghana saaya,Tumko dekha to yeh khayal aaya.
Tum chale jaoge to sochenge? Humne kya khoya humne kya paya..

Instagram: ๐Ÿ“ท๐Ÿ“ธ๐ŸŽž๐Ÿ“บMere photo ko, mere photo ko seene se yaar
Chipka le saiyan Fevicol se
Fevicol se fevicol se
Main toh kab se
Haaye main toh kab se hoon ready taiyar
Pata le saiyan miss call se

Flipkart ๐Ÿ›๐Ÿ›’๐ŸŽ (to encourage more people to do online ordering amidst ease of lock down): Ghar more pardesiya
Aao padhaaro piya
Ghar more pardesiya
Aao padhaaro piya

Nike: ๐Ÿ…๐Ÿ๐ŸŽพ๐Ÿ€๐Ÿ‰๐Ÿ‘๐ŸŒ๐Ÿ‡๐Ÿšดโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿ†Bhaag Bhaag Bhaag Bhaag Bhaag Bhaag Bhaag Bhaag ; Oh By God Lag Gayi, Kya Se Kya Huya,Dekha Toh Katora, Jhaanka Toh Kuaan; Kisne Kisko Loota,
Kiska Maatha Kaise Phoota, Kya Pataa
Bhaiyya We Don’t Have A Clue
Itna Hi Pataa Hai, Aagey Daude Toh Bhala Hai
Peeche Toh Ek Raakshas Phaade Muh
Ik Aandhi Aayi Hai, Sandesa Laayi HaiBhaag Bhaag D K Bose, D K Bose, D K Bose,
Bhaag Bhaag, D K Bose, D K Bhaag

After liquor lovers, did all the circus to get a bottle by standing in the queue during partial lockdown: ๐Ÿบ๐Ÿป๐Ÿฅ‚๐Ÿท๐Ÿธ๐Ÿฅƒ

Abhi mujh mein kahin,baaki thodi si hai zindagi; Jagi dhadkan nayi,jaana Zinda hoon main to abhi ๐Ÿ˜›

All the brands & people waiting for COVID19 vaccine:๐Ÿ’Š๐Ÿ’‰๐Ÿงฌ๐ŸŒก

Intaha ho gai, intazaar ki
Aai na kuchh khabar, mere yaar ki
Ye hamen hai yaqeen, bevafa vo nahin
Phir vajah kya hui, intazaar ki, intaha ho… Baat jo hai us men, baat vo
Yahaan kahin nahin kisi men
Vo hai meri, bas hai meri
Shor hai yahi gali gali men
Saath saath vo hai mere gham
Men mere dil ki har khushi men
Zindagi men vo nahin to kuchh
Nahin hai meri zindagi men
Bujh na jaaye ye shama, aitabaar ki


For nostalgia sake, you may wanna check out below Antakshari video. It will bring a smile to your face ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿคฉ

Signing off,

Until then, Sing for the years
Sing for the laughter, Sing for the tears (come on)
Sing it with me, just for today…

Pic courtesy: EventsHigh

Find your WHY..

So we are home bound for most of the times. Unprecedented times, isn’t it? Who would have thought? Is there a word to describe the feeling of split second, when we wake up in the morning after a good night sleep and don’t think of the various restrictions we are put through during these times. How on earth, can a virus which cannot be seen through a naked eye, control our lives so much? While looking out answers for tough questions like these, its important to make most of the situation by following the mandatory precautions by staying safe & healthy & taking care of ourselves & our family. ๐Ÿ‘ช

Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe– Abraham Lincoln

On work front, the lines between so called work-life balance are blurring. Apart from spending quality time with our family along with getting things done at work from home, its important to spend some “me time”, introspect & hone our skills. Its best time to sharpen our axe to be stronger, be better, course-correct & stay strong during these times. While looking out for something, over internet while doing a side project, I stumbled upon Simon Sinek online classes. It said Live Online classes specially put up during these times to get inspired, be safe and know yourself better. I had seen his TED talk which was the talk of the town when it came up. If you’re yet to see, check out below ๐Ÿ•ต

These sessions are one of a kind, interactive designed to walk you, step-by-step, through the process to find your WHY, finding your life’s purpose, your beliefs or causes. I personally gained lot of clarity after attending these sessions. One gets to interact with group of people across the world and apart from finding/or working towards finding your own true purpose, one can guide others by interacting, sharing their own stories. ๐Ÿ‘ผ

It mainly revolves around, constructing your Golden circle developed by Simonโ€™s ideas and philosophies by understanding your WHY. ๐ŸŽฏ Whatever may be your situation, WHAT you do may change but your WHY must always remain clear and constant. During these uncertain times, many of us may be forced to reinvent ourselves, reinvent WHAT we do. It can be unsettling and challenging. So, its important we move forward and raise our game by facing all the adversities head on.

Do check out these sessions during your free time, these will be super helpful. https://simonsinek.com/InspireU#/

Signing off, until then, Be Positive, Stay Inspired, Inspire Others ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ’ช๐Ÿ’ฏ

Harsha Balur

This is my Infy..

Chilly winter morning in a software office in Bengaluru suburb, a discussion was going on regarding selling Infosys for an enticing amount of $1 Million (about โ‚น 7.4 Crores).

9 years before, when Infosys was setup in 1981, they formed the company with a working capital of โ‚น10,000 with a major contribution from Mrs.Sudha Murthy by selling her gold from marriage. Once they started they realized with that amount, considering all costs & expenses, it would not last for more than a month. So they decided, they would lead a austere life, in-turn lay a solid foundation and much needed support to run Infosys. Their simple mantra was spend less than what you earned, that’s all.

Business then was very tough in India. To import a computer ๐Ÿ’ป, they took 3 long years, more than 20 trips to Delhi, the capital city, to obtain licence. Also, there was no telephone connection and it would take 2 years to do the same. To run a company during those times of slow bureaucracy and long-winded procedures,was a battle in itself. So they decided that other 6 co-founders barring Murthy to do the software development and work from US. That way, they would reduce the hassle and allow Murthy to hold the fort from India.

This is my Infy- song by Celine Dion

In 1990, the co-founders with the prospect of selling Infosys, with all the hard work & struggles that had to endure over the years, were hopeful to see the money now. There was a heated debate and everyone was giving their opinion and future plans of what’s in store for Infosys after selling it. Narayan Murthy, didn’t speak a single word and was listening in all the way and let his younger colleagues to have a say. So after 4 hours, when he got the opportunity to speak, he spoke about his humble beginnings, when he started off in a small apartment in Bombay. He believed then that it was his darkest hour before the dawn and then took a audacious decision to set up Infosys. Now that his colleagues were hell bent in selling Infosys, he offered to buyout all his colleagues without having a penny in his pocket. Everyone was stunned hearing this. Here was a man who could walk the talk, and never compromised any which way to sell his dreams. It paved the way to his colleagues to reconsider their decision.Patience paid off and in 1991, post liberalization, Infosys paved the way for showcasing Indian tech talent and software excellence to the world creating new possibilities.In 1999, Infosys became the first Indian company to be listed on NASDAQ, touching $100 Million ๐Ÿ’ผ๐ŸŽท

Today, Infosys has grown from a company of seven workers to a global corporation, an Indian behemoth,employing more than 2,14,000 people, with revenues of billions of dollars.๐ŸŽฏ

With the man himself, Mr. Narayan Murthy.

A nice video to conclude – All the struggles that went in to build Infosys during difficult times, similar to the ones we see today to build a Indian unicorn ๐Ÿฆ„, starting up from humble beginnings.

Signing off!! Until then Do good, Be Valued & Set an Example ๐Ÿ™‚

-Harsha, Once an Infoscion, always an Infoscion ๐Ÿ˜‡

Need a Quick Ride?

If we were to list major problems any Indian metro city is grappling with, traffic would be an foremost choice. The amount of time one spends waiting at a traffic signal is enormous. Simply put, Traffic is a menace for most of us. So if we know the problem, why aren’t we able to solve this problem convincingly? We know that we are staring at a complex problem here and many factors/variables come into play.

For a city like Bengaluru, over 70 lakh vehicles ply daily for a population of around 1.2 crores. This number of 70 lakh has more than doubled with more than 40 lakh new vehicles for the past 10 years. Staggering, isn’t it? Its a pain to see most of the commuters dealing with traffic woes on a daily basis adding to more frustration,stress etc.

Bengaluru Metro Rail are a great blessing for many ever since its inception as one can cover distance in less time and more importantly can be doubly sure of reaching a place at a specific time. But there is still a long way, until whole of Bengaluru is blessed with seamless metro rail connectivity.

For people traveling by road, public transport helps a great deal in terms of reducing the vehicles on road but may have to spend considerable amount of time dealing with the traffic head on. Commuters availing services of cab aggregators are ever increasing, their USP being point to point travel with all the convenience it offers. With growing population and ever increasing number of vehicles plying on the road on a daily vehicles, it’s a pain to see people traveling on their own car alone as big as SUV/MUV, isn’t a sheer waste of resource?

Pooling seems to answer this and helps a great deal to reduce the number of vehicles plying on road and these aggregators have solved the problem if not convincingly. They have their own set of problems like there are many detours one has to take for a different pickup, one may lose time considerably in pickup/drop of co passengers, not to mention some co passengers may be tough to deal with.

Quite recently, I got introduced to a car pooling mobile app called Quick Ride and ever since I have had a great experience. Compared to cab aggregators there are many benefits one can get from this car pooling exclusive app. First of all, one registers through corporate mail id after which one can get/offer a ride. Quite recently, they have added registration through Facebook account as well.

It provides an opportunity for a person owning a car and commuting to office daily to offer a ride to co rider who is traveling to same IT park. Rightly so, it takes riders convenience into account and offers ride through the route which he normally takes, without a point to point pickup/drop facility. So if you need a ride, you need to ensure that you on-board somewhere on the route taken by the rider. This helps in saving precious time for pickup.

Rides are very economical charging 50-80 for a 25 km ride. One can suggest a ride price too, if one thinks it is expensive. Based on the source and destination of your commute, one can select matching riders, check their profile, coordinate through messages/calls, GPS tracking etc. Some of the features are great like it gives a voice command for a rider for updates regarding upcoming pickup etc knowing that he will be busy riding the car. That’s really sweet, isn’t it?

Ride safety which is paramount is assured as the rider one is dealing with is a professional  himself and may be a colleague working in same firms as yours. A rider also knows that his co passengers are professionals too and are of no nuisance. I have seen more women availing this service as they are convinced of the ride safety. Moreover, it gives a great company to spend your time commuting with healthy and lively discussions and build your connections. In a way, you’re reducing your expenses(both for rider and ride taker), having a good company during your commute, building your network,  and more importantly by pooling, you’re reducing carbon footprint by efficiently utilizing the resources. One can see their Eco-Meter which provides stats like amount of CO2 reduced, number of kms shared etc. By quantifying , making you feel good and encouraging to share analytics among your network is a master stroke. Also, one more feature which is of great use is if you follow a fixed schedule, one can set a recurring ride so that you are notified and assured a ride every time. Also, all the transactions are done through wallet only and no cash is involved, one can redeem the points won at a fuel station too.

WhatsApp Image 2018-08-16 at 1.32.38 AM

By traveling alone in your car with 3-4 seats empty and complaining about traffic, one doesn’t realize they are also the traffic. So, if possible its great to carpool and Quick Ride has been solving this problem quite convincingly. If only they could market this product better, as I see people are getting to know and availing the benefits mainly through word of mouth.

This post is not a promotional post but my bit to promote the benefits of a really good app which is solving a problem which was waiting to be solved.

Utterly Butterly Delicious

This story is about most loved brand Amul-The Taste of India and their ever consistent advertising campaign featuring The Amul poppet(cute,little,naughty girl in her polka dots more often than not relishing Amul butter and other products).Their chief architect Dr Verghese Kurien was exemplary in bringing in the White Revolution, the largest dairy development programme in the world named as Operation Flood.

White Revolution was the offshoot of India’s Freedom movement, to empower the farmers by freeing them from the clutches of self serving middle men by eliminating them and in turn setting up a milk corporation. A farmer would bring milk cans on a daily basis to his nearest collection centre in his village and would be paid cash instantly based on quality and fat content in the weighed milk. The interesting thing here is, this milk is largely purchased by women thus empowering them economically and socially. 

Anand,once a serene and quiet village is today a symbol of modern nationalism. It is the headquarters of the Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd(GCMMF) and brand Amul. In the aftermath of 1962 Indo-China war, it was very difficult time for India. Agriculture was the top priority for our honorable Prime Minister of India Lal Bahadur Shastri. He even went to coin a slogan- Jai Jawan, Jai Kisaan. One hugely successful programme was milk co-operative movement in Gujarat under the leadership of Mr. Kurien. In 1964, our PM, wished to spend one night at a farm in Anand without any presence of customary security.He along with Kurien sneaked out into a farmers place to understand and empathize about their current situation, their problems, concerns and experiences with the Co-operative movement. After a good connect, PM requested Mr Kurien to replicate this on a national level paving the way for National Dairy Development Board headquartered at Anand.

It was vital for Amul-the Brand to market its products more effectively to capture the imagination of all its prospective customers. They felt services of a professional ad agency were outright necessary. So they hired an advertising agency to do their marketing and more importantly they gave them free hand and didn’t interfere whatsoever. That was the wisest decision ever taken in what could be a unbeaten partnership(a partnership, one cannot emulate easily) by which Amul grew leaps and bounds.

The positioning statement for their Amul butter was “processed from purest milk under the most hygienic conditions by a dairy co-operative from Gujarat“. And that’s when, to further refine the communication-Sylvester DaCunha who was driving the advertising campaign came up with this winning slogan “Utterly Butterly Delicious” when casually discussing with his wife. Eustace Fernandes, the art director, visualized and sketched a charming little poppet in a polka dots frock with matching ribbon in her ponytail. She was licking her lips to say “Utterly Butterly Delicious“. She was cute, smart, naughty, innocent,cheeky without any malice. This was an outright winner and rest is history. Over 50 years of advertising with the same character expressing varied emotions with diverse messaging theme is legendary. It only brings back memories of The Common Man cartoon created by the master illustrator R K Laxman.

It was decided that the agency would go with outdoor campaigns and hoarding at prime locations of Bombay was the best bet. When the first hoarding with the Amul poppet was put up, it was an instant success. A housewife, was drying her clothes in her balcony when she saw few people gathering on the main road. As crowd grew, she rushed to see, whether there was any accident only to find her kid pointing her to the hoarding with a cute little kid advertising for Amul. Such was the power of their communication and it’s underlying impact on psyche of their customer.

After few stints, the agency planned to go topical with their campaigning picking up topics of national interest. However topical ads, posed a challenge. One had to select a topic, create a rough sketch, present it to client, tweak it to incorporate client’s suggestions and then after final approval,distribute it to hoarding contractors. This would easily take a week by which the topic in hand would loose its relevance and hence the connect.

This was when Dr Kurien did the unthinkable. He gave a complete free hand to the agency to create their own ads without any client interference. The client just like common man on the street had the first look only when it was displayed in a hoarding in select prime locations of Bombay.

This was a great gesture and led to an unassailable partnership, the campaign,the wittiness of the ad, gave us enough reasons to chuckle about over the years. However, it had its own share of controversy when some of the ads didn’t go well with some institutions and was dealt in appropriately when the need arose.

There are no favorites, there cannot be, as one cannot pick and choose few of the topicals which are great. They have been very successful in capturing collective Indian consciousness. Anyone from an 8 year old kid to a 80 year old octogenarian,can relate to their ads and relish them.

So what ticks for Amul in terms of messaging? Is it just about playing with the words and having a popular opinion? In Product Marketing terms, their messaging has a pattern of grabbing the eyeballs of the onlooker by which they reinforce their offerings, why they are best in the business? Why Amul butter is the best butter one can have, why they are ahead of the competition etc. Also, there is some sort of vanity and bragging rights, that using Amul sounds cool. They adopt a messaging which energizes and inspires and in turn persuades their target persona to try their products.

I know some of my friends who have created an album of sorts of their topicals. Personally, this book- Amul’s India has been one of the good reads to understand the story behind these topicals and different point of views from celebrities from all walks of life who have their own Amul story to share. It’s Utterly Butterly Delicious ๐Ÿ™‚ Hope you enjoyed it as much I had putting up this post.

Picture credits and References: Amul’s India- Based on 50 Years of Advertising by DaCunha Communications

Netflix.ing

One of my recent obsession is a wide variety of TV series available on Netflix. My friend quipped, so many content to consume and we have only one life wherein we have some finite free time for TV consumption. Yes, we have been bombarded with lot of content these days, and what stands out is quality content. Netflix has a great following because of his rich content, TV series depicting whole range of stories from different genres, cultures, languages etc. Also, one notable fact is Netflix produces original content which possess great production values, book adaptations, other compelling stories etc. Some of the content comes by buying television and licensing rights from other service providers and streaming it on Netflix. Also, Netflix comes up with binge-watching shows wherein multiple episodes from a season are released at one-go. This creates lot of anticipation among fans and encourages audiences to watch season at one sitting.

Now, Netflix is eyeing Indian market in a big way and why not? As internet adaptation in India is happening in a big way and Netflix sees India to produce next million consumers. However, like in every market there is competition and Netflix has to compete with the likes of Hotstar, Amazon Prime, Voot, AltBalaji and even Shemaroo which has a huge repository of Indian movies. The approach Netflix is adopting is to produce more Indian content as other existing players like Hotstar generates great amount of local and multilingual content.

As a Original based out of India, Netflix started with a series called Sacred Games, based on a book by Vikram Chandra. It received rave reviews because of its performances, brilliant direction by ace directors like Anurag Kashyap & Vikramaditya Motwane, the setting where Mumbai city is one of the key characters and more so because of its riveting writing. Given that it is a TV series, it gives a liberty to directors like Anurag who doesn’t have to withheld his storytelling style because of censor or the so called Indian sensibilities, so in that sense gives great amount of creative freedom. With Sacred Games, Netflix India has got a great start and looking good for more India based original content.

Recently, Netflix India announced a series on Baahubali, a prequel based on the novel The Rise of Sivagami by Anand Neelakantan which according to me is a masterstroke. Baahubali, a Telugu movie initially produced mainly for regional audience, capturing the imagination of pan India,was quite a story in itself. Given the grandeur, vivid imaginary of a visionary director like S.S.Rajamouli and backing of leading Bollywood production company like Dharma Productions for its sequel, it created a record of sorts by being expensive Indian movie to be ever made followed by record collections. Now that Netflix has joined the bandwagon, with it’s great production values, it will surely receive new wings of encouragement to fly high and soar new heights.

Exciting times for Netflix India ahead..

Alemane..

Sweet!!! Who doesn’t like sweets?? Very few. Even though one is diabetic, he/she longs for it. We prepare sweet dishes during festivals, happy occasions and celebrations mainly to share our happiness. When we spot a cute kid we are like Cho Chweet or say as Tere Munh mein ghee sakkar when a friend states eagerly awaited good news. Sugar has been an important ingredient in our dishes. But interestingly, sugar didn’t originate from India, but from China, hence also called as “cheeni” referring to China. So how would Indians get their sweetness sorted out before sugar came into our kitchen? The answer is Jaggery. Jaggery called as Gud/Gur in Hindi/Marathi, Bella in Kannada, Bellum in Telugu and Vellum in Tamil.

Jaggery is an unrefined healthy sweetener prepared using concentrated sugarcane juice.It is made up of Sucrose, Glucose, Protein, Calcium, Iron, Potassium, Magnesium and Phosphorous. It is believed, daily use of jaggery may increase human life span. Jaggery strengthens the nervous system, improves bones, prevents anaemia and protects the body against environmental toxins. Also, less cases of diabetes are found by jaggery consumption as opposed to that of sugar consumption. Jaggery relieves fatigue as magnesium in it helps to relax the nerves, muscles and blood vessels. Jaggery has religious significance too. Many of festivals involve offering of jaggery to deity, its eaten before commencement of any good work or new venture.

My title of the post goes Alemane. Ale-mane? Sounds strange, isn’t it? So what does it mean? It simply means jaggery producing units (in a small scale). Its a festival, a sugarcane juice extraction festival to prepare jaggery in a traditional way mainly for domestic use. It’s a seasonal festival celebrated during winter in some parts of Uttara Kannada district (in Karnataka) mainly in Sirsi, Yellapur, Sagar and Siddapur taluk. If you have been there at least once, it will evoke a multi-sensory experience. ๐Ÿ™‚

20

I come from a place called Sirsi and have fond memories of attending such events organized by family friends who are into farming and cultivating sugarcane. This is no ordinary event, it requires lot of planning and a mammoth effort. I remember vividly when I visited such event, back in 2012 and would like to share some wonderful memories.

So here we go, let’s take a tour of a place called Tudugani, a village, 20 kms from Sirsi. This place is ideal for areca plantation and also rice fields which is a staple food in this part of the world.

Let’s go to the sugarcane field where farmers must be busy getting sugarcane.

Now that we got the sugarcane, let’s place it near our setup so that juice can be extracted out of it.

5

Adults or children alike feed the sugarcane into a machine.

Now, buffaloes come into action as they are made to revolve around so that juice can be extracted. It’s all about hard work for them as you can see from pics.

The juice is then collected and transferred to a tank through a pipe. This is the purest form of sugarcane one can ever get.

Theย sweetness of the juice is suchย that you can hardly drink a glass of it and best way to enjoy this drink is with some spicy snacks like khara mandakki (churmuri) or sev/chiwda as sides. Lime/Mint or Ginger can be added to the juice, to enhance its taste. And the sweetness can’t be compared with anything we get in market these days.The next process is to remove the scum from juice. So the juice has to be filtered which is done here using a cloth. Have a look.

This filtered juice is put in vessel and placed over a flame which is specially created for this purpose. This mixture has to be boiled to a particular consistency, so that we obtain a semi-solid mass.

Once that is done, it is kept in a vessel for some time to dry. The waste from the sugarcane which is called as bagasse can be further used as a fuel for boiling.

So this is the way we get our jaggery. It is mainly available in three forms- Solid, Granular and Liquid but the process to produce it remains the same. Solid jaggery is obtained by pouring the hot mixture in different moulds. Granular jaggery is got by boiling the cane syrup to thicker consistency and allowing it to cool in a vessel. Liquid jaggery doesn’t require more boiling and once we get thick vicious liquid after condensation,it is cooled off, to pour it into bottles. By switching to liquid jaggery instead of sugar, we can prevent iron deficiencies, indigestion, constipation and mainly obesity.

There is an interesting custom, that farmers set a hen free to move around Alemane as a mark of prayer to God so that the whole process goes on smoothly without any serious hurdles. Such hens are not consumed by people. Once the desired end product is got, it is packaged in tin cans and transported to market for sale. Apart from various variety of jaggery that we get, various local delicacy is prepared out of it like “Todedevu” (when mixed with ghee or milk and eaten, it’s like heaven) and liquid jaggery locally called as “Joni bella”(molasses) which is rich in calcium and iron.

(There’s an excellent Youtube video of how Todedevu is prepared in a traditional way. Click Below! ย Courtesyย  Mangalamurthy Bhat)

As much as it is about celebration, it is also about pondering, as this unique and interesting festival is slowly dying due to weak response which eventually leads to less profit for farmers. This being a traditional event, carried out since a long time and an integral part of our culture, it is our prerogative, to promote it in a big way.

Tripoto

P.S: Entire process of jaggery preparation is clearly depicted in this YouTube video, courtesy Prithvi Media Creations. Click here to see.

Signing Off, until next time we meet, take sweet, talk sweet and be sweet ๐Ÿ™‚