The 48-year-old chef, Haneef Mohammed, distributed Rs 21,000 out of the tip to the employees at his restaurant.

Won over by Mangalurean seafood Karnataka minister gifts chef Rs 25k trip to Mecca
news Local food Sunday, October 21, 2018 - 19:18

Such was the flavour and aroma of the Stuffed Pomfret and Green Tawa Pomfret of the coastal district that Karnataka Minister for Food and Civil Supplies BZ Zameer Ahmed Khan promptly handed over a hefty tip of Rs 25,000 to a 48-year-old chef from Mangalore. The legislator, who holds the post of Minority Welfare alongside the portfolio of Hajj and Wakf, also promised Haneef Mohammed that he would pay for his Umrah.

On Thursday, Zameer, who was in the coastal district for an official review meeting, made a pit-stop at Fish Market, a seafood restaurant for lunch. Impromptu, the eatery served him various delicacies made with local favourites such as pomfret, seer fish and lady fish, along with rice preparations.

A few minutes later, a party worker with the minister went into the kitchen and requested the restaurant’s chef Haneef Mohammed to come to the dining area. “As I entered, the minister greeted me warmly. He made me sit next to him, fed me a mouthful of food and told me that he had never eaten such an appetising course of fish,” Haneef said.

Post lunch, the minister took out Rs 25,000 from his wallet and handed it to Haneef. “He then assured me that he would take care of my Umrah (Islamic pilgrimage) and told his officials to take down my details,” said a happy Haneef.

For Haneef, who has been a chef for the last 18 years serving fish as his specialty, he says he has never come across a patron who made such a benevolent offer. “Although previously Congress leaders like Rahul Gandhi, Ghulam Nabi Azad, UT Khader and others have enjoyed our preparations, this was an exceptional gesture,” Haneef said.

The father of six and co-owner of the restaurant, Haneef distributed Rs 21,000 out of the tip to the employees at his restaurant.

“At present, I cannot make the journey as my passport is up for renewal, but in consultation with my family and if fate permits, I will confirm my Umrah in the month of January,” he added.

Story by (Subs and Scribes Media Ventures LLP).

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