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Pav wow!

Once considered as the poor man's food, Mumbai's popular fast food is making waves worldwide. On the third World Vada Pav Day, Jharna Thakkar meets Jumbo King's director Reeta Gupta.

india Updated: Aug 23, 2007 13:09 IST
Jharna Thakkar

It's greasy spicy crunchy tasty and cheap. The ubiquitous vada pav has come a long way since its humble creation, outside the steps of Dadar railway station.

What once used to be regarded as the ‘poor man's food,' is now sold to holiday makers in Switzerland, as quick breakfast bites on the streets of New York and of course on the plates of Mumbai's rich and famous.

Today, Mumbai's fastest selling fast food item has reached iconic status in the country. It's been given a ‘World' day.

Here's a chat with Reeta Gupta, whose family is credited for starting India's answer to Burger King.

Was World Vada Pav Day a Jumbo King idea?
Yes, it was the brainchild of my husband Deepak. This year marks its third anniversary. <b1>

Why did you decide to celebrate your product in this manner?
We celebrate Father's Day, Mother's Day and Valentine's Day. But there isn't a single occasion of Indian origin that we can relate to.

Is there any specific authority one has to approach before creating a 'day' like this?
Shockingly nothing elaborate. Just the trademark registry in India.

Are you planning this a worldwide phenomenon?
(Laughs) Of course, but all good things take time. We're proud to be the second Indian company to register such an occasion. The other one is World Mosquito Day!

Have your customers taken a shine to it?
No, it will take some time. In another 10 years, we hope to have evolved to the merchandising stage.

Future plans?
We've just opened outlets in Surat and Ahmedabad. Pune, Bangalore and Delhi are next.