Saturday, December 10th, 2022 01:54:41

Shame On Indians For Not Promoting Indian Food Habits

Updated: June 20, 2015 9:15 am

Oh God! Once again, a fresh controversy has started over the fast food Maggi, which is eaten by crores of Indians in every age group in almost all urban families, army canteens, desi dhabas, school canteens and where not? Our Vedic scholars have written that a man can be known how he is, if one knows his food behaviour. So, as usual, now the damage has been done to the Indians for consuming the alleged objectionable fast food Maggi, as samples found to contain excess of Mono Sodium Glutamate (MSG) and lead. But thank God, Narendra Modi has not said this!  Otherwise, till now, the secular brigade would have been crying itself hoarse, dubbing it unsecular. Uday India salutes to Shri V K Pandey, officer of Uttar Pradesh Food Safety and Drug Administration, who initiated the tests that detected “dangerously high” levels of lead in Maggi noodles. It took more than one year for the daring officer to expose the gargantuan MNC, Nestle. Shri Pandey had collected the samples of Maggi from a store in Barabanki on March 10, 2014. On the basis of the tests conducted in Gorakhpur and Kolkata labs, complaints were filed against Nestle’s Nagal Kanan Industrial Unit in Harolli, Unna, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi-based Nestle India Ltd and the company’s FMCC managers. One report was also deposited at Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, which will decide the fate of the Maggi where required for total recall. It is to be noted that the Kolkata lab has confirmed the high levels of MSG, a taste enhancer, and also found that the Maggi samples contained lead content of 17 parts per million—against the permissible lead content of 0.01 parts per million. It’s a shame for the food processing department and the ministry concerned, who failed till now. Is Modi’s minister for the department concerned Ramvilas Paswan listening? Yes, Paswan is now on record saying that he would now promulgate more stringent laws to check the toxic diets. Yes, this is high time the government must be more alert and adopt rigorous process for food security of India. India has witnessed many deaths due to adulterated food and liquor owing to sheer carelessness on the part of departments concerned.  My point is we never learnt from history and in India all the actions against any culprit are politically motivated. One hopes the Maggi alarm would open up many a Pandora’s Box not only about the fast foods but also there are hundreds of hazardous examples that are waiting to be exposed.

In last one hundred years, there are innumerable instances of attack having been been made by invaders to break our rich culture, tradition and what not? There is a deep-rooted conspiracy hatched by foreign NGOs, MNCs and political organisations to dilute our thoughts, change our food habits, distort our history, deform our primitive agricultural systems, break our alternative system of medicines and adopt modern medicines, and what not? It took them hundred years to systematically finish Bharatiyata, i.e. Indianness, from our soil. And in that killer process, we the Indians are major partners to kill our own Indian system. First, our joint family system was broken. When both the husband and wife are becoming working persons, then either the packaged food or the fast food is the only alternative. The way the MNCs provided us foods and beverages in colourful packages, how old or frozen it may be, Indian companies failed to match them. Once the food has got a brand value, parents do not bother to order it online. Because no one has time to cook, no one has time to spare with their children, who cares for freshness? Now in modern times, freshness only comes out now from a tubular spray that is available in market. We Indians cannot and should not forget—How we feel fresh when our mother and grandmother serve us hot traditional foods like dal, roti, rajma, karhi, idli, dosa, mix veg, also known as aviel in the south, khir, gulab jamun, etc. In our country, in every season food menus are different, and in every festival, we have traditional mouth-watering menus. These foods are prepared in Indian kitchens with utmost care and procedure by our families. Still now, in Indian villages, no woman enters a kitchen (rasoi ghar) without bathing, as it is considered to be the holiest place. Before cooking starts, our mother lights the lamp first in the kitchen and after preparation of food, a small amount of food is offered to Agni Devata (Fire God). The food is served like Prasad at every Indian home and no one wastes the cooked food. Wasting of food is considered to be inauspicious. Our grandmother always serves a part of the cooked food to go mata (sacred cow), other animals and birds. It has its own importance, according to our Vedic values. But the children now-a-days are not fortunate enough to enjoy the cooked food prepared by mothers always, because of certain constraints, which, in long run, will have a huge negative impact on our future generation. If chowmein, burgers, pizzas, sandwiches can be sold in India and the companies preparing them are earning a huge profit from the Indian market, why can’t Indian foods be available here? Our hospitality industry, food processing industry need to research more on it. When thousands of MNC restaurant chains are seen along the national highways of India, why not our Indian restaurants prepare themselves to compete with them? India has a mammoth market for food and beverages, so it is but natural if the indigenous companies do not come forward in the market, then it would be exploited by MNCs in the liberal economy age.

Deepak Kumar Rath

Deepak Kumar Rath

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