A legacy Indian carpet brand; An unexplored street food trail in Pune

OBEETEE’s patrons over the years include Queen Elizabeth II, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Amitabh Bachchan.

A legacy Indian carpet brand; An unexplored street food trail in Pune

Sunday February 04, 2024,

5 min Read

An advisory from RBI: Don’t share KYC documents with unknown entities.

In the wake of continuing incidents and reports of customers falling prey to frauds being perpetrated in the name of KYC updation, RBI urged the public to exercise caution and due care to prevent loss and safeguard themselves from such malicious practices.

Moving on, stock exchange BSE has changed the daily limit of Paytm shares to 10% from 20% earlier after the stock of the fintech major hit a 20% lower circuit for two consecutive sessions. 

The development comes after the central bank, on Wednesday, ordered the payments bank unit of One 97 Communications to stop accepting fresh deposits in its accounts or wallets from March. 

A senior Finance Ministry official confirmed on Saturday that the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) will probe Paytm Payment Bank if there are fresh money laundering charges by the RBI.

Elsewhere, Apple's Vision Pro, the $3,500 headset that blends three-dimensional digital content with a view of the outside world, landed in the company’s physical US stores late last week.

Youtuber Sam Kohl of Apple Track has conducted a durability test… and the results are surprising! 

In today’s newsletter, we will talk about 

  • The story of a legacy Indian carpet brand
  • An unexplored street food trail in Pune
  • Women’s struggle in resettlement colonies

Here’s your trivia for today: What was the name of the earliest form of paper currency?


Interview

The story of a legacy Indian carpet brand

OBEETEE carpets

OBEETEE carpets X JJ Valaya from the Proud to be Indian collection

Founded as Oakley, Bowden and Taylor in the dusty town of Mirzapur in Uttar Pradesh way back in 1920, OBEETEE Carpets is one of the oldest and largest handwoven rug companies in India and the world. Over time, it has expanded to become the last word in refined luxury and exceptional craftsmanship. 

Angelique Dhama, CEO of OBEETEE Carpets (Retail), in a chat with YS Life, dives deep into the brand’s illustrious history and what makes it so opulent.

Luxury: 

  • The brand’s uniqueness and regality have been acknowledged globally, with some of its creations adorning the Rashtrapati Bhavan as well. 
  • OBEETEE’s patrons over the years include Queen Elizabeth II, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Amitabh Bachchan. 
  • The company operates in India and the US, with plans for UAE, Riyadh, and other potentially lucrative markets.


Food

An unexplored street food trail in Pune

Pune street food

Pune’s string of reputed academic institutions earned it the moniker ‘Oxford of the East’; however, there’s so much more to the city. Now a prominent IT hub and one of the hottest food and cocktail destinations, Pune has come a long way.  

What has stayed intact through the years is its thriving street food culture.

Food tour:

  • A popular drink, mastani is essentially a delectable combination of a thick milkshake, dollops of ice cream, and crunchy dry fruits. While there is no certainty around the origin of its name, many say locals would exclaim "masta" (meaning wow!) after slurping it. 
  • Once you have had your fill of the vada pav and the batata vada, make sure to grab a bite of the sabudana vada. The primary ingredient in this dish is sago which appears like squishy white pearls. 
  • Alu Vadi is a typical Puneri dish that’s available on most streets!  Do not be fooled by the name though: it is not made of alu or potato. It’s essentially steamed gram flour that is rolled in colocasia or taro root leaves, which are called alu in Marathi.


Inspiration

Women’s struggle in resettlement colonies

Facing crime and health hazards, women find themselves trapped in urban resettlement slums. In photo: women at the Perumbakkam resettlement site.

For women, relocation from their neightbourhoods comes with a high cost as they struggle to start from scratch. This coupled with high crime rates, lack of sanitation, and poor employment opportunities negatively affect their overall health.

Struggle:

  • Chennai’s Perumbakkam slum resettlement houses close to 1 lakh people, or 20,000 families, who take up 190 blocks constructed by the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board (TNSCB) to relocate them from over 60 slums. 
  • While there are scores of gated communities mushrooming on the IT belt of Old Mahabalipuram Road, resettlement colonies have earned a reputation for being breeding grounds for crime, which adversely impacts employment opportunities for its residents.
  • In 2022, after studying five slums in Delhi, voluntary organisation Shakti Shalini revealed that 89% of the children in marginalised families with a known history of gender-based violence witnessed arguments between their parents or clashes in their one-room homes while growing up.


News & updates

  • Network: Chinese automaker Geely Holding Group said on Saturday it has launched 11 low-earth orbit satellites, its second dispatch, as it expands its capacity to provide more accurate navigation for autonomous vehicles. The satellites were launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in the southwestern province of Sichuan
  • Moving out: A record amount of Chinese money is flowing into overseas equities as despondent investors seek a way out of the sagging local stock market. Inflows into 33 onshore exchange-traded funds that track foreign benchmarks excluding Hong Kong reached $2 billion in January.
  • A secret: A stealth startup led by ex-Blue Origin leaders, focused on harvesting resources from the moon, has quietly closed a sizable new tranche of funding. Interlune, a startup that’s been around for at least three years but has made almost zero public announcements about its tech, has raised $15.5 million in new funding.  


What was the name of the earliest form of paper currency?

Answer: Flying Money. The earliest version of today's banknotes was the "Flying Money" used by wealthy merchants and government officials in Tang Dynasty China (AD 618–907). 


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