Some months ago, BMC & other allied agencies in their enthusiasm completed the work of road, drainage, foothpaths, bus shelters etc. where I stay.
The next day morning & continuously I saw number of taxi’s; rickshaw’s being parked there from 7 am in the morning but post 1pm suddenly disappear. Being the inquisitive kind, after a couple of days, started asking questions – Why the rush? What is happening etc. etc. to the watchman of the building, my driver etc.
Finally, my driver decided to impart the knowledge & wisdom – Anna (south indian – no idea if tamil, telegu, malyalee) had set up shop there. He sells idlis; vadas; & filter coffee. In the beginning he used to come walking carrying 2 containers.
After a month or so, he started coming on his newly acquired cycle. A couple of months now, I see him with 2 cycles; 1 umbrella; 2 more assistants & I understand he is expanding to serve puri bhaji also.
Trying to understand more, went down today to check his offerings – Cleanliness with disposable newspaper being used to serve the food, with steel plates reserved for the executive offering – idli + vada + coffee. 2 buckets to clean up everything.
The background & logistics works something like this:
His elder brother had come to Mumbai a couple of years back, started similar venture at santa cruz. Brought his wife & family to help last year. And he came over six months ago, surveyed locations & started this bijness. The two assistants are his wives brothers.
Whilst he did not share his earnings, he let out that his daily hafta amounts to Rs. 250/- plus Rs. 50/- for storage & water from a neighborhood building.
Based on these two locations, his brother now drives a motorcycle and has a cart now……children study……and the assistants are scouting for other locations in Kandivali, Malad, somewhere close to Malls. Target is to have 4 restaurants for the 4 boys they have between them!
But as he says, No Taxes, No Bank Account except a ration card……..May his Tribe Grow!