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Well-(w)heeled professionals shift gears, drive food van business

More and more educated professionals have chosen to helm the food van business in Lucknow and their decision has “less to do with money and more to do with their passion”.

lucknow Updated: Mar 14, 2019 11:28 IST
Rajeev Mullick
Rajeev Mullick
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Professionals,Lucknow,Food van business
Jaspreet Singh, a hotel management graduate, runs a food van in Aliganj area and even employs two helpers.(Deepak Gupta/HT Photo)

It’s a recipe for success with a difference.

More and more educated professionals have chosen to helm the food van business in Lucknow and their decision has “less to do with money and more to do with their passion”.

The list includes an assistant professor of a private university, an MBA degree holder, a hotel management graduate and a mass communication postgraduate. Take the case of Nitin Chandra, 37. This MBA degree holder now operates a food van (e-rickshaw) dishing out a wide range of mouthwatering fare like fish tikka, tandoori chicken and chicken Afghani to customers in Lucknow. He says he earns enough to provide for his wife and two children.

At 6pm, Nitin sets off from his in-laws’ residence in Aliganj on his e-rickshaw loaded with a wide range of non-vegetarian dishes. He stations his e-rickshaw near Kendriya Vidyalaya, Aliganj.

He claims he earns close to Rs 5,000 on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday and Rs 2,000 on Monday and Thursday. Tuesday is an off-day as very few people take non-vegetarian food that day. Asserting that there is no compulsion behind his decision to take up the business, Nitin says, “I love to cook. After getting an MBA degree, I worked for a few days as a hospital administrator. But there was no job satisfaction as my heart was in the food and catering business. I left the hospital billing work and set up a restaurant in partnership with a friend in Delhi’s Lajpat Nagar. The friend ditched me and I suffered huge losses.”

At 6pm, Nitin sets off from his in-laws’ residence in Aliganj on his e-rickshaw loaded with a wide range of non-vegetarian dishes. He stations his e-rickshaw near Kendriya Vidyalaya, Aliganj. ( HT Photo )

He then left Delhi and came to Lucknow, his wife Dipti Chandra’s hometown, bought an e-rickshaw and modified it into an eatery. His wife also helps him in managing the business from home by taking care of the raw material.

Then, there is Jaspreet Singh, 38, a hotel management graduate, who runs a food van in the same area, selling fried fish, chicken and other non-vegetarian items. Like Nitin, he has come to Delhi from Lucknow. He employs two helpers.

Dr S Goyal, an assistant professor with a private university, also runs a food van with a partner in Aligarh.

He opened the eatery around Diwali and says the venture has brought a new spark in his life.

“It has less to do with money and more with my passion. Here, one can get kulcha paneer tikka, mushroom tikka and a lot more,” he says.

First Published: Mar 14, 2019 02:28 IST