MANGALURU: The menu of Indira Canteen has not gone down well with the people of the coastal region. While government has stuck to a uniform menu for the entire state, it mostly caters to the food habits of people in Old Mysuru region and those in the coast are not used to it. Breakfast and dinner served in Indira Canteen such as Puliogare, Vaangi baath, Pongal, Chitranna, Bisi bele baath and Menthya pulao are not popular in the coast and many have not even heard the names of these items.
The only change here is the availability of boiled rice. “People here prefer Idli-Vada, dosa, poori-bhaji and buns for breakfast. Idli and Uppit-Sira are only non-rice option available in Indira Canteen. Even the curd rice served for lunch is not preferred in the coast,” said Rakshit, an auto driver from Bunder area. Food and Civil Supplies Minister U T Khader, while announcing two months ago that Mangaluru will get five Indira Canteens, had said that the food items served in coast will be different from other places and it will be region-specific.
When this reporter reminded him about it before the inauguration of Indira Canteen near State Bank on Tuesday, he said rice items like Puliogare and Chitranna are healthy. He said people in the region are not used to it because it was not introduced so far. However, he said they are open to changing the menu to cater to the requirements of local people based on the response.
The menu was not a problem for people on the first day as Tuesday’s menu for breakfast included Idli and Uppit-Sira, both of which have takers here. But on other six days, there will be rice items for breakfast along with Idli. The canteen has to provide three idlis and a cup of rice item. If a customer refuses rice, then he has to be given three more idlis instead of rice. Bhujanga Shetty, supervisor of State Bank Indira Canteen said they will prepare 300 plate idlis and 200 plate rice-item for breakfast every day. Once the idlis are over, people will have no other option but to go for rice.