Indira Canteen Reality Check – 1: Less truckers, so fewer takers on Jodi Thenginamara Road canteen

Indira Canteen Reality Check – 1: Less truckers, so fewer takers on Jodi Thenginamara Road canteen

February 24, 2022

It gets limited food supply as truckers have a new location

Mysore/Mysuru: The Jodi Thenginamara Road that begins at one end of Moulana Abul Kalam Azad Circle (Highway Circle) usually buzzes with sound-and-dust-raising goods trucks. Starting from the crack of dawn till late in the night, the road is busy, thanks to hundreds of goods trucks that carry goods that arrive in trains to Mysuru.

The trucks are parked in the Railway Goods Shed parking on this road. Keeping in mind the large trucker population and allied workforce, an Indira Canteen was set up on the Jodi Thenginamara Road exclusively to cater to the food needs of loaders, drivers, agents and cleaners.

But now as the Railway Goods Shed parking has been shifted to Gumnam Shavali Dargah nearby, the entire truckers operation has moved there, leaving the Jodi Thenginamara Road with only a few truckers.

This has directly impacted the functioning of Indira Canteen here and most of the times, the canteen premises is deserted or there are only a few people.

Jodi Thenginamara Road canteen was opened in the first batch along with 11 Indira Canteens that were opened across Mysuru city in January 2018. Very soon, the food became quite popular here and the majority of the people who ate here came from the Railway Goods Shed.

This apart, people from nearby localities including the group housing scheme residents frequented the canteen for breakfast, lunch and dinner. As the food was dirt cheap and good quality was maintained, people never shied away from having food there. After sumptuous food for as low as Rs. 5 and 10, the truckers used to return to their vehicles after having a smoke and tea in the nearby shops. This was their usual routine.

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Quantity reduced

Every day for breakfast 200 to 250 idlis were made to cater to the needs at the canteen and lunch daily was made using 60 to 65 kgs of rice. A minimum of 100 people used to come here every morning for breakfast and over 200 people used to come for lunch and dinner.

Ever since the Railway Goods Shed has been shifted from Jodi Thenginamara Road, walk-ins to the Indira Canteen has reduced drastically and only 100 idlis are served in the morning while a limited 15 kg rice is prepared for lunch. Even the night crowd has reduced as the street is devoid of trucks after 6 pm. Even the people living around the canteen come here sparsely.

Limited food supply

Though there is no compromise in the food quality, there are fewer takers and as such, canteen food managers supply less food here as it might go waste if excess food is brought, said sources. Not that there is no one to have food here, the canteen still serves the poor and economically marginalised.

Balaji, a daily wager said that he has breakfast, lunch and dinner at this canteen as other hotels are not affordable. “Even the Darshini hotels are expensive when compared to the food that is available for Rs. 5 and 10 here. The canteen is a boon to people like me,” he said.


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