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Curry Walla in Temple Town: The Restaurant serves Indian Cuisine in Angkor Wat, Cambodia

The pure vegetarian restaurant which serves the flavored kadhi chawal in the temple town is something of surprise

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Kadhi Chawal. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
  • The people of Indian-origin who live in Cambodia haven’t forgotten their homeland or its delicious recipes
  • The pure vegetarian restaurant named Curry Walla began in June 2006 
  • There is a  total of 5 Indian chefs, 54 Cambodians and 2 Philippines between the four restaurants

The interactions between India and Cambodia date back to 400 AD. Not only in its external forms does it picture India but even the ideals of ethics and morality are shaped by Indian philosophy. There have been migrations to Cambodia, resulting in the exchange of customs and adaptation of many forms, including that of food. The people of Indian-origin who live in Cambodia haven’t forgotten their homeland or its delicious recipes.

Amarjeet Singh the young co- owner of Curry Walla which is situated in Siam Reap, famous for the Angkor Wat – a 12th-century Hindu-Buddhist temple complex, said to be the largest religious monument in the world, talks to Shyamola Khanna of The Indian Diaspora Website.

This pure vegetarian restaurant which serves the flavored kadhi chawal in the temple town is something of a surprise. Curry Walla began in June 2006. It was started by Amarjeet and his cousin Inderjeet in partnership with a long term Cambodian resident Ranjit Singh and Vijay from Singapore. March 2008 saw the opening of Curry Walla 2 which was recently renamed Namaste. Adjacent to Curry Walla is a Cambodian restaurant by a Khmer Chef. Namaste Spa 1 & 2, and ChopstiX which serves Chinese food was started in 2013. Shyamola Khanna says that it is very popular in the city because she says that every time she   went   in for a meal, it was always full.

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An Indian Diaspora article states that Amarjeet is part owner with his cousin Inderjeet and Ranjit who has been living in Angkor Wat since 1996. Inderjeet came in 2001 and Amarjeet came in 2006.

“Now I have been here almost 9 years and 7 months. We are doing pretty well. It is a small and peaceful city and the Cambodian people are warm and friendly. We are quite happy with the city life here,” says Amarjeet to The Indian Diaspora Website.

Amarjeet got married with a Cambodian girl named Sem Srey Pheak around 2 years ago with the blessings of both the Cambodian and the Punjabi families. Although language is a barrier, both families are very comfortable with each other, he says.
Amarjeet says, “I can’t see my mother learning the local language!”

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Image Source : theindiandiaspora
Image Source : theindiandiaspora.com

Talking about his ties with Punjab and his life over there, he says “Of course I do miss Punjab every day, for the seasons, the various festivals, friends, and relatives. At present half of my family is living here, some are in Punjab and some in the US. So we are looking forward to a suitable time when we can have a family gathering sometime in the future.”

With a total of 5 Indian chefs, 54 Cambodians and 2 Philippines between the four restaurants, Amarjeet supervisors the restaurants and makes an effort to be present in all the four places. His  partners and elder sister and brother-in-law also play a part in its running, mentioned theindiandiaspora.com article.

Apart from restaurants, there are various other establishments that strengthen the “Indian ties” with Cambodia. Raj, a third generation Punjabi from Delhi runs the Asian Crafts Centre in Angkor Wat. The centre is a sprawling showroom with all kinds of artifacts from India. The Indian Diaspora article says that his grandfather was the first one who ventured out to Cambodia and set up the business. Raj, who has a degree in gemology, says that he would like to go back to work with gems in India.

prepared by Ajay Krishna of NewsGram. Twitter : @ajkrish14

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Coal consumption forecasts have already been downgraded significantly from 2013 projections, and major shifts in energy policy like Modi’s are likely to add significant weight to the idea that India might well become a much bigger player in renewable energy production in the next 20 to 30 years

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FILE - Smoke billows from chimneys of the cooling towers of a coal-fired power plant in Dadong, Shanxi province, China. VOA

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government announced its target to increase India’s renewable energy capacity to an equivalent of 40% of the nation’s total green energy output, it raised eyebrows. Could this mean an end to India’s coking coal industry?

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For instance, state-run NTPC has cancelled several large coal mining projects, including a huge plant in Andhra Pradesh. Meanwhile, the private sector has continued investing in renewables. Adani Power has over $600 million invested in solar panels in the southern state of Tamil Nadu.

That Modi has made an investment of $42 billion in the renewable energy sector over the past four years and his renewables plan is likely to generate a further $80 billion in the green energy sector in the next four years is good news for the Rupee. External investment in India is likely a sign of increased currency transaction in forex trading signalling the Rupee gaining strength against other pairs. Like the Indian economy, millions of dollars are traded on currencies every day, and increased interest in the Rupee helps cement India’s economic and investment potential.

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Not so long ago the Indian government had a target to connect 40 million households to the national grid by the end of 2018. It even tasked CIL, the state coal monopoly, to produce over a billion tonnes of coal per year by 2020, an increase of almost 100% from 2016. It’s an ambitious goal, notwithstanding the environmental impacts of mining for such an unprecedented amount of coal. This is the same coal that already generates 70% of India’s primary commercial energy requirement; compare that figure to the UK’s 11%, Germany’s 38%, and China’s 68%, while France has practically shut all of its coal power stations. This means that India’s shift from coal could have important implications for the global climate, and any investors looking towards coal would be making a very brave and risky decision.

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Environmentally, coal isn’t a sustainable source of power, certainly not in current quotas.

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Coal consumption forecasts have already been downgraded significantly from 2013 projections, and major shifts in energy policy like Modi’s are likely to add significant weight to the idea that India might well become a much bigger player in renewable energy production in the next 20 to 30 years – although it’s difficult not to see coal remaining an important power source considering India’s significantly large coal reserves still available in Eastern India.