HE MAY not even have heard of Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) Director Sunita Narayan, but 20-something Rakesh Kumar, who sells tender coconut water at the City’s eating hotspot Chhappan Dukan, is aware that there was a tirade against colas last year, which has zoomed up his sales.
Same is the case with most other tender coconut sellers across the City, including the wholesalers. “Haan koi madame ne Cola ke khilaf prachar kiya tha, tab se bikri badha hai (yes, some madam had opened a campaign against colas, since then our sales have increased),” echoes Mohanlal Goyal of Goyal Fruits and Juice Centre near Palasia Thana.
While Rakesh says he sells nearly 80-90 pieces daily, Goyal sells on an average 100 pieces daily. Both concede that the sales have risen since last year or so. “Earlier it was just 40-45 coconuts per day, now it’s almost double,” Rakesh says, adding, “In summers, I sell as many as 200 or more.”
Goyal, who like others gets his stock from the Choithram Mandi, has not had such luck, but he says, “Our sales have increased by almost 20-25 per cent since last few months.” But that is explained, as unlike Rakesh, his is a proper fruit shop offering a range of choice for customers.
Earlier four to five trucks coconuts were unloaded at the Choithram Mandi per week, which has now increased to almost 8-9 trucks per week, i.e. minimum one truck daily.
Each truck brings in 6,000 pieces. The whole lot comes from neighbouring Gujarat. Says Abdul Aziz, a wholesaler at the Choithram Mandi, who claims to have introduced tender coconuts to Indore, “We used to get two trucks earlier but now its three.” Quiz him if he has heard of Sunita Narayan and he says, “Well, I don’t know the name, but there was this lady who told about the bad effects of cold drinks. Since then the sales have increased.”