Ranjani Govind in today’s Hindu has a story on “Subbamma Angadi“, the iconic Gandhi Bazaar shop that goes by its (Aadhar-linked) trade name Srinivasa Condiment Stores.
Subbamma’s legacy products—chutney pudi, hurigaalu, and Congress kadlekayi—have honed the likes of Masti Venkatesh Iyengar, D.V. Gundappa and G.P. Rajaratnam.
And it is appropriate that the angadi, which has sold kilotonnes of Congress kadlekayi—roasted and spiced groundnuts—should be turning 70 along with Independent India.
That sets us thinking.
OK, so Narendra Modi‘s dream of a Congress-mukt Bharat increasingly looks like a possibility, but can the BJP remove “Congress”, as the kadlekayi is called in short, from the palates of Subbamma’s patrons?
Congress kadlekayi or kadlebeeja, according to this 2016 story by Akhila Ranganna, got its name after the 1969 split in the grand old party, the two halves of the nut signifying the parting of ways. (Roopa Hariprasad had put out the same view in 2008.)
H.R. Ramprasad of Srinivasa Brahmin Bakery has a different take:
“In the pre-Independence era, Congress party workers would write important party information on small chits of paper that would be hidden in boxes and sacks of peanuts being transported from one place to another, so that, hidden from the British, they could get the information from one place to another. This is how the name Congress came to be associated with the peanuts.”
Another version has it that eating these roasted and spiced groundnuts was the usual accompaniment for those listening to long, boring political speeches at National College grounds. And since the speakers were mostly from the Congress, the name stuck.
Either way, Narendra Modi has a challenge on his hands.
This much we can say for certain: since it is Subbamma’s grandchildren, not Indira Gandhi‘s, who are in charge, this “Congress” will survive.
To rub it in further, K.V. Anantha Rao and K.V. Ramachandra are perhaps far better custodians of the “Congress” brandname than Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi.
Unless, some ‘bhakt’ creates NaMo Nuts™.
Read the full article: Subbamma Angadi is 70 and fresh as ever
Screenshot: courtesy The Hindu