Saturday, November 8, 2008

Vada Pav - the golden goose

I was amused to read the news item - ' Engineering Vada Pavs' in today's edition of the Mumbai Mirror.

I recall that years ago I along with the editorial committee members of our Company's inhouse magazine 'Tutari' had met the Sena chief Balasaheb Thackeray for an interview in connection with the Deepavali issue. As we entered his room at "Matoshri" , we saw Balasaheb seated on a huge chair resembling a throne, with the Shiv Sena symbol, a growling tiger right above his head. Indeed it appeared to us as "a tiger riding on another tiger." The interview was full of facts, puns (mostly intended),sarcastic wily barbs and regaling humour. I remember he had at length mentioned about the 'birth of the Vada Pav'. He had initiated the idea of vada pav to provide employment to the sons of the soil, at a time when 'abundance of people and scarcity of jobs' was the phenomenon. He was rather emphatic when he mentioned that the sons of the soil preferred cushy and comfortable jobs as compared to the hard but lucrative and stable jobs that he had offered to them at MTNL,Ceat Tyres and other companies. Hence it is not very surprising to see that majority of those employed at MTNL and Ceat Tyres hail from UP and other places in the North (hope this statement of mine does not provide fodder to Rajsaheb and his followers).

Balasaheb and his party did ensure a lot of opportunities for employment to the sons of the soil in many big companies like L&T. However, to ensure that others who were still unemployed eke out a decent living, he announced the setting up of Vada Pav stalls throughout Mumbai, Pune and other places.The Vada Pav has continued to be the delight of one and all and offered 'value for money'. I fondly remember when in college with barely anything in one's pocket,it was Vada Pav,Usal Pav and Misal Pav that satiated one's hunger.To this day, I remain committed, especially, to the Vada Pav. I will for the benefit of vada pav lovers like me, recommend the 'Golden Vada' shop at Lonavala. It's just amazing wth the 'chatni'.

It was extremely pleasing to read the news item that vada pav has once again become the platform for providing employment to the unemployed engineering and other graduates.The Shiv Sena, this time, has professionalised the Vada making and is holding a workshop on 24th November at Shivaji Park where it has invited the top 25 Vada Pav vendors, food experts and chefs to provide training to the wannabe vendors in the making.

I am extremely happy that by continuing to provide jobs to the unemployed, the'Vada Pav' has been living upto its promise. Can we say the same thing about the Government of India ?


Shree Bhave said...

Dear Subba,

Read your blogs - both the memoir on your father and the one on Vada Pav.

The one on your father brought memeories of my father whom we lost 2.5 years back and was struck by the similarities in their beings. Simple, unassuming, humble ever willing to help,devoid of vices, ego and anger. They don't make them like that anymore !

Keep up the good work and keep writing. Love, Shree Bhave

nsiyer said...

Thanks Shree.

I do agree with the fantastic comment'They don't make them like that anymore !
Let's try.
Keep visitng my blog and kindly post your comments.

Satish said...

Dear Subba,
Your feelings did remind me of my father and the vada pav meeting with the Sena tiger also reminded me of my meeting with him.
Hope to read lot's of such feelings from you, keep up the good work and do keep on writing my friend

Satish Luman

srinivasan said...

Iyer is the Great

i enjoyed ur article on vadapav,one suggestion, kindly add in ur profile " Prolific writer". Now shivsena lauching the shiv vada pav to compete McDonalds burger,its typical mumbai food nobody will escape from Vadapav as well as from MNS

lappet! said...

vada pav zindabad!

nsiyer said...

Dear Satish,
Your encouragement and true appreciation is overwhelming.


nsiyer said...

Dear Srinivasan,

Thanks a million!


nsiyer said...

Dear Lappet,

Yes! for information, Vada Paav making training is happening on 24th at Shivaji Park, Mumbai.



Anil P said...

When well prepared vada-pav is an automatic choice for a snack.

Babu Bhaskaran said...

I have not been in Mumbai or any place that sells vada pav. I read this post with lots of envy. The combination of the taste of a vadapav with the right taste of chatni, is awesome. Can someone please courier a Vada Pav for me?

Babu Bhaskaran said...

Also, I really liked the title of your blog, iyer-n-higher !

neha khandelwal said...

the best vada pav on thiz planet:)

piyush vala said...

vadapav, is a popular spicy vegetarian fast food dish native to the Indian state of Maharashtra. It consists of a batata vada sandwiched between two slices of a pav.

Manish Katoch said...

Dear Satish Daddy,
Was that the same father who you kicked out of his own house?
I am so frustrated that I married your stupid daughter. Please stop hating Biharis now!!
You Bihari Son-in-Law,