'I'll have no regrets if I lose'

Punjabi Boy

'I'll have no regrets if I lose'

With chocolate-boy looks, a conscious hand dipped in oil and the appetite of a Punjabi, Delhi’s 23-year old boy Ripudaman Handa casually auditioned for Master Chef Kitchen ke Superstar.

Without realising that destiny would favour him this time, he successfully cleared not just the auditions but all the rounds and is now all set to battle to the end in the Grand Finale, tonight.

In Delhi to encourage kids during the auditions of Junior Masterchef, the gym trainerturned-culinary expert says, “It feels great to be back home after five months,” says Ripu who is known to use least oil or ghee in the food that he cooks. “Now since I am home, my mother has been feeding me paranthas,” he laughs!

Inclined towards food, Ripu wanted to pursue hotel management. He even took admission, only to quit mid-way. “I used to pay the fees from my pocket but my parents weren’t optimistic about my choice of career. So, even though I left it, I continued my tryst with cooking and eating,” he says.

But Ripu doesn’t blame them. “They had seen me doing nothing throughout my schooling. “Mein bahut mastikhor tha. I used to bunk sch­o­ol, tuitions but faced no restr­ictions. How could they have believed in my cooking skills? But I did have a talent which was unexplored.” Till Master Chef happened and the gym-trainer turned into a chef!

“I was serious about my gym because I didn’t have any­thing else to do in life. I didn’t want people to say, ‘Kucch nahin karta yeh’. For­t­u­­nately, now my parents point out the newly developed prof­e­ssi­o­n­alism in me.

They wan­t­ed me to be serious and here I am!”

“There are mome­n­ts in life when you become serious. For me, today is the day,” he says with context to the finale. “I never thought of defeating any contestant. All of them are senior and more experienced. Even my mother said, ‘Beta jo kar achche se kar.’” Ripu followed the advice and is proud that people now recognise him as an expert.

“Those known to me invite me over and ask me to taste and judge their dishes but I am not ‘that’ expert! Today is a big step. Aaj toh aar ya paar,” he says adding that he has wh­at he wanted from the show. 

“I will have no regrets if I lose. I wanted to be a winner in the eyes of my parents and I am one now!” he exclaims.

Yet, if he wins the show, Ripu says he will not open a restaurant but delve into researching about food. “My ultimate aim was to see my parents happy and I am glad that wish it has been fulfilled now.”

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