With thousands of shops, hundreds of carts, horses, cows, vehicles and an ever-rising number of visitors and shoppers, Delhi’s Chandni Chowk can be a menacing place if you just want to savour a jalebi. But the syrup-drenched, pretzel-like traditional sweet from one of the oldest shopping hubs in India is a mere click away.
A new start-up promises to come to the rescue of many Delhiwallas who want to eat good food from the Mughal-era Walled City, but can’t stand the chaos of what a government portal calls the food capital of India.
“Whenever we want to eat the food on weekdays, it becomes impossible for us,” said 24-year-old Rahul Garg. This and a desire to have their own business led Rahul and his IIT graduate brother Anshul to launch an online food delivery platform that focuses Chandni Chowk’s delicacies.
While Rahul was a software analyst at the Royal Bank of Scotland in the suburb of Gurgaon for two years, 22-year-old Anshul worked as an assistant grade manager at a Bangalore-based firm. Both had the option of taking over their family business — their father is a cloth merchant in Chandni Chowk — but it wasn’t exciting. After a train journey across India with budding entrepreneurs and a boot camp at Startup Malaysia, Rahul decided to combine what interests him and what he is trained to do.
Chandnichowkfood.com has enlisted 10 famous food joints, some of them more than 100 years old, and offers everything from samosas to kulfis to halwas to customers in a limited area. Targeting office-goers and shopkeepers in the corporate centre and tourist spot of Connaught Place, the service will have traditionally dressed delivery boys supply food in an Indian bag called a “potli”.