When Karan Kumar lost his job because of the pandemic, he along with his wife Amrita overcame hurdles to start selling food in a car under the name ‘Amrita Ji Ke Rajma Chawal’, which went on to become a hit.
When Karan Kumar from Delhi lost his job as a driver during the COVID-19 pandemic, he was uncertain of how he would make ends meet.
The Class 12 graduate and his wife Amrita had nothing to fall back on except a car that was given to them by Amrita’s father. With no home, they began spending days on the streets of Delhi. And it was after two such months of hardship that Amrita suggested starting a food business ‘Amrita Ji Ke Rajma Chawal’.
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Karan recounts how they would eat at Bangla Sahib and Rakab Ganj gurudwaras to satiate their hunger during the day and spend nights in different locations. Amrita adds, “We somehow kept ourselves busy during the day but felt lonely and depressed at night. I spent many nights crying and questioning our fate.”
This is when she came up with the idea of starting a food business.
Every afternoon between 12.30 pm and 4 pm, in a white Alto car parked at a junction of Talkatora stadium in Delhi, Karan and Amrita set up their stall. In steel containers, they would distribute and sell hot rajma (a curry made with kidney beans), chole (a tangy gravy made with chickpeas), kadhi (a gram flour-based gravy), rice and chilled buttermilk.
Today, the couple serves a minimum of 100 customers a day, earning Rs 60,000 per month. They say this wouldn’t be possible without the support they received from various social media bloggers who helped them promote the business.
Karan says they have many repeat customers along with a host of new faces every day. “Our most popular dish is rajma chawal (a thick gravy made with red kidney beans) and kadhi pakoda (onion fritters in spiced yoghurt sauce)” he asserts adding that he feels grateful that Amrita stood by him during these tough times.
“Amrita did not abandon me but supported me at every step. The crisis has made our bond stronger than ever,” he adds.
Watch how the couple scaled their idea into a loved business:
Edited by Pranita Bhat