Appaji Canteen on shaky ground, stalls expansion

The canteen was opened by JDS member to compete with Indira canteen

People standing in queue at Appaji Canteen

Bangalore, November 20, 2017: Though it has been giving restaurants in its vicinity a run for their money, by providing quality food, its costs of production are very high.

"The money that we invest in the food is around Rs. 34,000 to Rs. 38,000 and what we get through sales comes around Rs 26,000. So everyday we encounter a loss of Rs 8000 to Rs. 10,000", says Mr. Yogesh, Appaji canteen manager.

“Appaji Canteen was not opened for political gain but for humanity. It is to make sure that the poorest sections of the society can afford a good meal. We had plans of expanding initially, but since the canteen is running into losses, expansion is not on the cards as of now,” says Mr. YogeshHegde, canteen manager of Appaji Canteen.
The canteen is run by T.A. Sharavana, a Janata Dal (Secular) member of the  Karnataka legislative council in the Hanumanthnagar area of Banshankari.
 Set up at a cost of Rs. 10 lakhs, the canteen serves breakfast (7:30 am to 10:30 am) at Rs. 5, tea/coffee at Rs. 3 and lunch (12:30 pm to 3 pm) at Rs. 10. The canteen also serves Ragimuddhe (ragi ball) along with the usual rice sambhar and Ricebath for lunch.

B.V Raju, an autodriver who often stops by the Appaji Canteen for lunch, said, “The food here is better than the food served in Indira Canteen. Most of the Indira Canteens don’t have a kitchen of their own; they have a central kitchen in Chamrajapet from where all the Indira Canteens are delivered food. But Appaji Canteen has its own kitchen.”


Quality of food served in Indira canteens disappoints

The presence of Appaji Canteen in Hanumanthanagar has also affected the business of eating joints in the vicinity.
Kumar, the cashier of Nanda Gokula Hotel, located a few yards from the canteen, said, “In these three months since the time the canteen has become functional, our business has fallen down by 10 per cent because of the cheap food the canteen serves. We give rice sambhar at Rs. 30, whereas Appaji canteen gives for Rs. 10.  Earlier our coffee was at Rs. 10; then we decreased the price to Rs. 7, but the canteen serves coffee at Rs. 3. Most of the local people go there”.
Similar is the case with Coffee Time, where Mr. Dharnesh, the cashier said that since the introduction of Appaji canteen, their business had fallen by 15 per cent.
Appaji Canteen serves around 1500-1800 people per day as compared to the 800-900 people that an Indira Canteen serves in a day.

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