Iconic Lucknow eatery faces closure

Iconic Lucknow eatery faces closure

The Uttar Pradesh government’s crackdown on “illegal” slaughterhouses has drastically reduced the supply of buffalo meat in the market.

This has threatened the very existence of many non-vegetarian eateries, including the iconic Tunday Kababi, that tickle the taste buds of those fond of Awadhi delicacies.

Tunday Kababi, which specialises in buffalo meat dishes like kababs and biryani and is hugely popular with non-vegetarians, had to shut down for the first time in its over 100-year existence.

“We had to shut down our Chowk branch on Wednesday, owing to a shortage of buffalo meat. The abattoir that used to provide buffalo meat was sealed by the authorities,” said a worker about its branch in the walled city. He said the shortage has forced them to switch to chicken and mutton kababs. “I am not sure if our customers will like that,” he said.

Other shops which specialise in Awadhi non-vegetarian delicacies like nahari kulche, galawati kabab and biryani also face similar problems. Many shops selling such items were closed on Wednesday.

City eateries that serve buffalo meat dishes are now trying to get the raw meat from other parts of the state. “Lucknow does not have any slaughterhouses with a valid licence... the administration has decided not to renew the licence of shops selling buffalo meat,” said a local official here on Thursday.

According to sources, more than half of the meat consumed in the city is buffalo meat. “The government should come out with a plan to allow slaughterhouses. They should issue fresh licences after ensuring compliance with the rules,” said a biryani shop owner in the old city’s Akbari Gate area.

Around 50 illegal slaughterhouses have been sealed in different parts of the state since Yogi Adityanath took over the reins of the state on Sunday. Hundreds of shops selling meat, too, were closed.

The crackdown evoked protests from a section of people in Kanpur and Meerut towns.
Samajwadi Party MLA from Kanpur Irfan Solanki said he would raise the matter in the Assembly. “The decision to ban abattoirs will render thousands of people unemployed,” he said.

Tunday Kababi, which specialises in dishes like kababs and biryani and is hugely popular with non-vegetarians, had to shut down for the first time in its over 100-year existence.

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