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Couple ditched jobs to sell tea. IANS

This is one couple who decided to give up the comfort zone of fat-pay packets, Rs 30 lakh annually between them to venture into an unknown realm — starting a tea shop

The duo — Nitin V. Biyani, 36 and wife Pooja, 34 — embarked on their journey after considerable thought and intellectual inputs from their elders, especially Pooja’s father.

One fine day, the Biyanis finally dumped their cushy software engineering jobs with top multinationals in Pune to throw open their ‘Chai Villa’ in Nagpur’s centrally-located Darodkar Square.

Tea is everyone’s favourite. Facebook

“Pooja and I worked in the highly-taxing IT industry. Often, like other professionals, we used to drink a cup of tea (chai) to relax and destress. We always craved for healthy and tasty chai, but what we got was really terrible chai made at tea-stalls in grossly unhygienic conditions and poor in taste,” Nitin told IANS.

“We both thought of changing all this and replace with hot, tasty, fresh handmade chai at nominal rates. Then, we just kick-started the idea in Nagpur, the Orange City of India last November,” Pooja added.

Earlier, they carried out detailed market research for nearly four months to learn that true to its reputation, India is indeed a tea-drinking country where 75 crore people drink at least two cups of chai daily, or a whopping 150 crore cups.

Also Read: Parle G: A Brief History Of India’s Favourite Biscuit

“Calculate that in terms of revenue per cup, the amount of milk, tea-dust, tea-masalas, sugar or other ingredients – and the simple act of consuming chai builds up to a massive tea-industry,” Nitin explained.

Though the Biyanis started Chai Villa in a rented shop on C.A. Road (at Darodkar Square), they introduced a host of innovations, a clean and pleasing ambience, courteous service, and of course, a selection of around 20 varieties of hot piping or cold chais that are sipped (lapped) up hungrily by the patrons.

“In the past five months, we have poured out over 175,000 cups of chai from the ‘kitli’ (kettle) and netted around Rs 15 lakh in the ‘galla’ (collection box), including around 30 per cent profits,” Nitin said candidly, but with a tinge of pride in his successful venture.

The innovations and business models introduced by the Biyani, and the show managed with the help of a 10-strong team, seem to have struck a chord among the people of Nagpur and they are now being eyed by a couple of top investors.

“We give free delivery of hot tea over certain distances for a minimum order of five cups or Rs 100 value, so consumers can always enjoy their refreshing hot cuppa. Plus, we have tied up with small local business folks to sell tea on our behalf at a 10 per cent margin, or ‘anytime chai’ model, which has elicited a huge response,” he said.

Then, there are local network deliveries, on the lines of pizza delivery, that ensures customers can get fresh, hot chai within the shortest possible time and a unique monthly subscription plan for corporates who can order tea in bulk quantities for their staffers or guests and pay the bill at month-end, he added.

Explaining the runaway success for the tiny start-up, Nitin says that the pricing played a major factor — between Rs 8 and Rs 20, which is quite competitive with the rates of the traditional tea-stalls.

“We score in terms of using only distilled water, clean preparations, using our secret herbs and the best of tea-dust and sulphur-free sugar, serving in eco-friendly paper cups or clay-cups (kulhads, as was done on the railways once), prompt service in a pleasant ambience, plus service at the customers’ doorstep at affordable rates,” he said.

They serve many types of tea. Pixabay

There are other higher priced offerings on the menu card, depending on the customers’ choice, with ice-cream-chocolate coffee occupying the top slot at Rs 45, and accompaniments of light snacks and sandwiches for that truly refreshing feeling. However, the Biyanis are not resting on their current laurels or the past 175,000 cups served — and have mega-expansion plans lined up.

“We plan to start franchise operations shortly and are already flooded with potential franchisees, launch at least 10 independent Chai Villas in Nagpur city by December 2019. Altogether we hope to sell around two million cups of tea and expect revenues of upto Rs.3 crores,” Nitin said.

Chai Villa would hire around 150 youngsters, preferring the poor and the semi-literate or even physically-challenged, who are the most needy, for these upcoming ventures, he assured. Presently, Nagpur citizens love to visit Chai Villa anytime from 10 am to 11 pm, sip leisurely on the chai of their choice and leave with a smile on their lips — “which we consider the biggest compliment”, according to Nitin. IANS


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It is believed that when a woman goes through her menstrual cycle, she goes through the different lunar energies.

Well, if you'll notice then the moon takes twenty-nine days to complete its lunar cycle, whereas women's menstrual cycle is generally 28 days! Coincidence? I think, not.

It is believed that when a woman goes through her menstrual cycle, she goes through the different lunar energies. In fact, in ancient times it was said that the natural rhythm of women was to menstruate under a new moon and ovulate under a full moon.

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Photo by Wikimedia Commons

Hugs, caress scenes, extramarital affairs, vulgar and bold dressing, bed scenes and intimacy of married couples are being glamourised in utter disregard to Islamic teachings and culture of Pakistani society," PEMRA stated

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has directed Pak TV channels to stop airing what it calls indecency and intimacy in dramas, Samaa TV reported.

A notification issued by the authority states that it has been receiving numerous complaints from viewers who believe that the content being depicted in dramas does not represent the "true picture of Pakistani society".

"PEMRA finally got something right: Intimacy and affection between married couples isn't 'true depiction of Pakistani society and must not be 'glamourized'. Our 'culture' is control, abuse, and violence, which we must jealously guard against the imposition of such alien values," said Reema Omer, Legal Advisor, South Asia, International Commission of Jurists.

"Hugs, caress scenes, extramarital affairs, vulgar and bold dressing, bed scenes and intimacy of married couples are being glamourized in utter disregard to Islamic teachings and culture of Pakistani society," PEMRA stated, as per the report.

The authority added that it has directed channels time and again to review content with "indecent dressing, controversial and objectionable plots, bed scenes and unnecessary detailing of events".

Most complaints received by the PEMRA Call Centre during September concern drama serial "Juda Huay Kuch is Tarah", which created quite a storm on social media for showing an unwitting married couple as foster siblings in a teaser for an upcoming episode. However, it only turned out to be a family scheme after the full episode aired, but by that time criticism had mounted on HUM TV for using the themes of incest to drive the plot, the report said. (IANS/JB)

Keywords: Pakistan, Islam, Serials, Dramas, Culture, Teachings.

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Dozens of female high school and university students in Afghanistan have joined vocational centers to learn tailoring and cosmetology

Dozens of female high school and university students in Afghanistan have joined vocational centers to learn tailoring and cosmetology as the women and girls have been banned from school and university since the Taliban took over the country, Tolo News reported.

According to these girls, sitting at home is very difficult for them, therefore they are willing to learn a profession.

"It has been a couple of months that we are at home since schools and universities were closed. We have to learn a profession or a job because we can't sit like this at home," said Samira Sharifi, a student.

"I want to learn a profession for my future to help my family, we want our schools to be opened so that we can carry on with our education," said Mahnaz Ghulami, a student.

Most of the trainees in the vocational centres are students of high schools and universities.

After the closure of high schools and universities across Afghanistan, Herat female students have started gaining vocational training in the province.

"We have decided to learn tailoring along with our education," said Shaqaiq Ganji, a student.

"It's necessary for every woman to learn tailoring to help her family and her husband, especially in this bad economic situation," said Laili Sofizada, a teacher.

Due to the closure of schools and universities, the number of students in vocational centers doubled compared to recent years, the report added.

"Our classes had the capacity of 20 to 25 students but we increased it to 45 students, because most of the students have lost their spirit, and their schools and universities have closed," said Fatima Tokhi, director of technical and professional affairs at the Herat department of labour and social affairs.

The Labour and Social Affairs department of Herat said the department is working to provide more opportunities for Herat girls and women to learn vocational training.

"The art and professional sector and the kindergarten departments have started their activities, we support them and supervise their activities," said Mulla Mohammad Sabit, head of the labour and social affairs of Herat.

During the past two months, most of the women and girls who worked in state and private institutions lost their jobs and are trying to learn handicrafts and vocational training. (IANS/JB)

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