Sunday April 5, 2020
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Harangue still rampant amid pseudo intellectuals in Kolkata

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By Sreyashi Mazumdar

images (2)Sipping a cup of tea, wearing a cotton kurta and a jhola dangling across the shoulders, he (anonymous) called for the tea stall vendor and said: “Dada Ekta cha are biscuit diye dao.” Turning to the political page of Ananda Bazaar Patrika, he gawked at the headline on the first page of the leading daily. In a minute, he was surrounded by his friends.

Taking to their seats, all of them started deliberating seethingly on issues concerning development in Kolkata. “Till Mamata is helming the state affairs, no good will be rendered to the state. CPI(M) has already ruined the state and Mamata’s administrative capability is a cherry on top to the same,” he said.

One would often come across such vivacious youngsters thronging the most-talked about getaways in the City of Joy; however, the cock-a-hoop tales doesn’t really materialise owing to their lackadaisical attitude.

“Kolkatans talk a lot. They think that change can happen in a closed room or mere deliberations will overhaul the status of the city; however, this doesn’t really happen in reality. Protests and stalling classes are some of the common phenomena in the city but they fail to yield a result,” said 42-year-old Soumen Biswas.

Attuning to the humidity and the sultriness permeating the city, the tempered souls inhabiting the same are often found in the midst of a heated conversation. Vociferous slogan like “We want change. We will revolt.” can be heard reverberating across the alleys. “Student politics is something that is quite relevant in Kolkata but it has lost its sheen. Students now take to streets owing to every petty issue. One shouldn’t overdo an act as it loses its sheen,” said Arijit Banerjee, a professor at Calcutta University.

Adding to the hubbub, the intelligentia of this city is no less. There might be a string of articleshjhk

 by the best of the intellectuals such as Amit Chaudhuri, Neil Mukherjee, and Upamanyu Chatterjee, who essay the dilapidated condition of the city. There might be literary festivals with glitterati talking over important issues catering to the city, but a very few of their catharsis has brought forth a change.

“The problem with the intellectuals mainly involve their penchant for a bourgeoisie culture. They might be talking of varied issues ranging from grass-root level politics to cinema and Poriborton but the words they choose to flesh out the same is essentially uptown and unintelligible for the commoners. The divide between the pseudo intellectuals and the commoners at times adds on to impasse surging the city,” said 23-years-old Sushanta Choudhury, a Presidency University student.

Fending off the garrulity prevalent in the city, Kolkatans should think of bringing forth a drastic change. Words should give up their pages and take to reality as action speaks louder than words and it is the same for the city as well.

 

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Foodies Must Try These Dishes from the Streets of Kolkata

Here are 5 must try dishes from the streets of Kolkata

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Foodies Kolkata
Here are the dishes from the streets of Kolkata that foodies would not want to miss. Wikimedia Commons

BY PUJA GUPTA

When you think about Bengali food, you will have a veritable carnival of sweet treats and seafood dishes parading through your mind. While roaming the streets of Kolkata, you will drool at all the delicacies; thats the Kolkata street food scene for you. Every true Bengali food lover has their recommendations or will suggest some must-try street food. But there are a few places which foodies agree you have to try!

Chef Ananya Banerjee, the owner of LAB studio, who hails from West Bengal, lists the top five must-try food items from the streets of Kolkata:

(1) Kathi-roll:The Kathi-roll of Bengal is a famous Mughlai influenced dish. The dish comprises of mutton and chicken rolls, spiced with fresh lemon juice, finely chopped green chilies, red onions and salt and is served as a roll in an egg paratha. Simply mouth-watering!

(2) Jhal Muri: This Bengali take on Chaat, distinguishes itself with the use of mustard oil or paste. This pungent treat is a must-have for a tete-a-tete over tea!

(3) Kobiraji Cutlet: “Kobiraji”, is a juicy cutlet, usually made with prawn coated with a lacy fried egg on outside. “When I was young, I remember going down to the Shyam Bazar- crossing for evening walks with my grandfather. After our walk, we would regularly eat prawn- Kobiraji from a food stall called Allen’s Kitchen. This tiny place has been serving the delicacy for more than 80 years,” says Banerjee.

Jhal muri
Jhal Muri is a Bengali chat that is loved by all foodies. Wikimedia Commons

(4) Moghlai Porota: This is surely not for the faint-hearted! It’s a flaky, crispy porota (parantha) stuffed with mutton mince and eggs. Have one and it will keep your tummy full for the rest of the day! The Anadi-Cabin, a restaurant on Dharmatala streets in Kolkata, is one of the pioneers in making “Mughlai-porota”.

Also Read- The Best Destinations for a Perfect Travel Experience

(5) Macher Chop: Among the many influences that the British gave us in their 200-year reign, the “chop” preparation is very popular. You go anywhere in the world, the word “chop” usually means “cut-of-a-meat”. However, in Bengal, it typically means fish, meat or vegetables, crumb-fried. You will typically get a whiff of that appetizing aroma, from the local roadside snack counters every evening around 5 pm.

It’s barely a preface into the sheer delights Bengali cuisine has to offer, but this must-try is enough to get you hooked! (IANS)