New Delhi: Buffalo meat was back on the Kerala House menu yesterday and was lapped up by the lunch-time crowd as the items that were briefly discontinued following a row that saw police carry out a raid at the canteen here were sold out within 45 minutes.
Kerala MPs stage a protest outside Kerala House over the beef controversy in New Delhi on Tuesday. Pic/PTI
The ‘sold out’ tag quietly came up on the menu board much to the dismay of many who had thronged the eatery, a day after the state-run guest house had removed buff, or buffalo meat amidst a political row.
Interestingly, an English menu board placed at the counter of the restaurant announced that Meat Fry and Meat Curry, with Buffalo mentioned in brackets, was available yesterday.
The message was put up seemingly in a bid to clear the air over the controversy and emphasise that only buffalo meat is being served here and not cow meat as alleged by a member of a fringe right-wing group.
“We are serving buffalo meat today and we have been offering only buffalo meat in the past as well. There is no truth in allegations that cow meat is served here,” said Sudeesh, a member of the Staff Canteen Managing Committee.
Another canteen staffer said buffalo meat fry and curry was served between 12.45 PM and 1.30 PM. “Our prepared stock was enough to serve 150 persons during the lunch hours,” he said. The eatery, ‘Samridhi’, mainly caters to the office crowd of Central Delhi.
Interestingly, the crowd profile suggested that the controversy had drawn a large number of youths to the eatery. Restaurant sources said, on an average, anywhere between 60 and 70 plates of items made from buffalo meat are sold daily at R50 each. Controversy had erupted over Delhi police personnel entering Kerala House on October 26 following a complaint that cow meat was being served there.
Meanwhile, maintaining that the Delhi police action on Monday has affected Centre-State relations, Kerala Cabinet at its meeting yesterday discussed the beef row and decided to take legal course if the Centre aped the explanation given by Delhi police that ‘they only did their duty and carried out an inspection in accordance with law’.
No. of persons who ate buff meat for lunch at the Kerala House yesterday
Average price of a dish made from carabeef
60 to 70
Average number of plates —containing buff meat — sold
at Kerala House daily
New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) yesterday demanded sacking of Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi alleging that he misled people on police entering Kerala House to investigate a complaint about beef being served in its canteen. “It was an illegal raid and then the Commissioner has the cheek to misguide people and to cite a law which is not relevant,” AAP leader Ashutosh said. “He has no business to continue in his post, either he should resign or he should be sacked.” When questioned about the Delhi government’s role in verifying whether beef was served at Kerala House or not, Ashutosh said, “The government will act when there will be information that something illegal is taking place. We believe nothing illegal or unlawful is taking place here.”
'Vishnu Gupta's arrest illegal'
New Delhi: The lawyer of Hindu Sena chief Vishnu Gupta, who was apprehended yesterday for allegedly making a false complaint that beef was being served at the Kerala House canteen in Delhi, said that his arrest was illegal and demanded that due process of law must be followed in the case. “In the morning, as I was informed by his friend they were having breakfast in the Tilak Nagar area, they were not aware of the Kalandra being issued against them. They were having breakfast in the area when a private car [PB08] came and picked them up without any warrant, without any authority, without informing anyone. It looked more like a kidnapping instead of an arrest or detention,” said advocate Vikas Padora.