Street Food Around the World

One of the best ways to know about the history and culture of a place is to try out its cuisine. Not only does it provide one with a delicious treat, it also speaks a lot about the place and its people. Local cuisines range from elaborate meals to roadside snacks. But I feel, to get the real taste of a place you need to try out its street food. While trying out various dishes from the streets you get to explore a place in the best way possible. Here are some amazing food items from all around the world!

Aloo Chat – South Asia

It is a dish which is made with boiled potatoes, cut into cubes and mixed with different spices and chutney. It is popular in Pakistan, parts of Northern and Eastern India and Bangladesh. Aloo chat is a snack or side dish and it varies from region to region in terms of spices and taste.

Crepe – France

Crepe is a popular pancake like pastry which is popular in France and Belgium. They are made with all kinds of fillings and flavours. There are two types of Crepe – ones that are sweet that are made with wheat flour and ones that are savory which are made with buckwheat flour. Sweet crepes are eaten with fruits, custards, whipped cream or chocolate and savory crepes are served with eggs, mushrooms, cheese and ratatouille.

Chuan – China

Chuans are a type of kabab served with spices like black pepper, cumin seeds, sesame and red pepper flakes. These meat kababs are roasted over charcoal or deep fried in oil. It originates from the Uighur and other Muslim communities of China.

Gelato – Italy

Often confused with ice cream, Gelato is an Italian dessert made with milk, sugar, cream, nuts, fruits and toppings. It is much low in fat than traditional American ice cream and has more flavors which makes it a rich and delicious dessert. There are a lot of flavors including vanilla, chocolate, hazelnut, pistachio.

Hot Dog – United States of America

It is a classic American street food and you can find it in food trucks and restaurants across cities like New York and Chicago. A grilled sausage is served in between a steamed hot dog bun along with mustard, ketchup, onion, cheese and chilli. There are a lot of varieties which differ in shapes, taste and sizes.

Mango Sticky Rice – Thailand

Mango Sticky Rice, also called Khaoniao Mamuang is a popular Thai dessert. It is also eaten in Cambodia, Vietnam and other Southeast Asian countries. A specific form of sticky rice is mixed with coconut milk and is served with Mango slices. The coconut milk is added so that the rice absorbs all the flavour and tastes sweet. It is popular during the peak mango season in Thailand during the summer months of April and May.

Naan – Central Asia and Middle East

Naan is a traditional bread which originated in Central Asia and the Indian subcontinent. It is made with flour, water and ghee. Additional ingredients like milk and yoghurt are also added in different varieties. Made in a tandoor oven, it is a flat bread which is served with other items like curries and fillings. It is served hot brushed with butter and ghee.

The curious case of Prashant Bhushan

Prashant Bhushan, a public interest lawyer in The Supreme court of India. He is one of the founding members of ‘Swaraj Abhiyan’ and ‘Sambhavna’ founded in 2015 after dissenting from the Aam Aadmi Party, where he played a key role in implementing the ‘Jan Lokpal’ bill alongside Anna Hazare, Arvind Kejriwal, and many others. He has been tirelessly working in the field of human rights, environmental protection, and accountability of the public servants. He is associated with various organizations including the Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL), People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), and Transparency International (India). Due to his family background, he is able to take cases pro-bono and for paid cases, he charges only 5% of what other lawyers charge. He also claims that he does not take cases until he feels his client is “morally right”. Being “morally right” is objective but looking into his past activities one can feel he is being moral. He represented the petition which became the first one in which an IAS(Indian Administrative Service) officer was convicted of corruption charges. He criticized governments for waging wars against Naxals and is of the idea is that the hidden agenda behind “Operation Green Hunt” was to clear the tribal lands for mining and industrialization. In order to de-escalate the situation in the Red Corridor government should suspend arms in the /Naxals region and instead focus on providing foods and infra to the tribals. He assisted Narmada Bachao Andolan activists opposing the Sardar Sarovar Dam. Bhushan advocated revoking the Armed Forces Special Powers Act in Jammu and Kashmir and is of the opinion that the government should try to persuade people of the valley to align with India but should be allowed to separate if one wishes.

Recently he has been found guilty by the Supreme Court of India on contempt for derogatory tweets against the judiciary. Why? How one can find a tweet so offensive that in the midst of a pandemic the Supreme court of India arranges a bench to hear for a case so trivial when so many questions persist of state’s response to the pandemic, when crucial cases have continued to drag on for years like-

  • Challenges to Article 370
  • Electoral bonds
  • Citizenship Amendment Act
  • Habeaus corpus petitions
  • Fundamental rights of people of Kashmir

Acts like these reflect the growing intolerance in the top authorities. Even 1500 lawyers from across the country have spoken against the decision and urged the top court to “take corrective steps to prevent miscarriage of justice”. Even the Supreme court itself has said that “The ignition of contempt should be substantial and mala fide interference wit fearless judicial actions, not fair comment or trivial reflections on judicial process and personnel”. Fair comment has not been defined but could be implied by various judgments of the court that fair criticism is criticism by a person who is competent enough to speak on the topic, has a good record, and doesn’t has the intention of demean the office of CJI or judiciary. Top authorities should remember that criticism is the basis of democracy, anyone can stand against them, not to hinder the judicial process but to have their opinion. If people are to be punished for their tweets and comments over social media, then it is a warning alarm for a democratic country. People should realize the severity of the situation and try to bolster the democratic institutions and protect them from those who are trying to undermine its sanctity. Its high time to realize how our institutions are getting biased, for making derogatory and hateful remarks regarding a particular community the responsible have not been tried, but a person with so clear record is been found guilty within 12 days of making a tweet.

Explained: Why the Kerala govt has taken control of an 800-year-old Church

Early on Monday morning, the Kerala government took control of Marthoman Jacobite Syrian Cathedral Church at Mulanthuruthy in Ernakulam district, which has been in the focus of a dispute between Jacobite and Orthodox factions of the Malankara Church, a prominent non-Catholic Christian community.

Take over triggered by SC verdict

The takeover has brought to the forefront a decade-long dispute between Jacobite and Orthodox factions of Malankara Church. The Church at Mulanthuruthy, built in AD 1200, has been managed by Jacobite faction, but as per a Supreme Court verdict of July3, 2017, its ownership should go to the rival Orthodox Church. 

The Supreme Court had upheld the validity of the 1934 constitution of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church to govern the parishes under the Church. Although the court verdict came on dispute over the ownership of two churches, it impacted over 1000-odd churches. The court verdict had given a clear upper hand for the Orthodox faction, which has been governed by the constitution of 1934.

Since the SC verdict, several churches under dispute have already been handed over to the Orthodox group despite stiff resistance from the bishops and laymen from the Jacobite Church. As the government delayed implementing the SC order due to political compulsions, the Orthodox Church moved various courts against the non-compliance of the order of the apex court.

Mulanthuruthy church

Established in AD 1200, the Marthoman Jacobite Syrian Cathedral Church at Mulanthuruthy is one of the ancient Churches in Kerala. The church is a fine example of Gothic architecture. The carvings, sculptures, symbolic icons and wall paintings, are a blend of Indian, West-Asian and European architecture. Most of the parishioners belong to the Jacobite faction.

Why a takeover now

In the case of the church at Mulanthuruthy, the Orthodox faction had moved a contempt of court petition, telling the Kerala High Court that their laity have been denied access to the church. The government cited the Covid-19 scenario and the monsoon havoc in the district as reasons not to take over the church as an action would demand mobilisation of force, now burdened by lockdown duties. After the single bench favoured the government stand, the Orthodox group moved a larger bench.

Rejecting the government contention, the division bench on August 12 issued an ultimatum to the Ernakulam District Collector that the church should be taken over within five days and submit a compliance report to the court. Hence, the takeover of the church in the early morning of Monday, when only a few hours have been left for executing the high court directive.

The district officials have to deploy police to remove the protesting bishops, priests and faithful of the Jacobite Church, who have been camping at the church premises since Sunday to resist the takeover. The church was locked from inside by the Jacobites, but police broke open the gates and evicted the protesting people.

Apple took just 2 years to add a trillion dollar to its market cap, but the next one won’t come easy

Apple Inc. has done it again. On Wednesday, just two years after becoming the first U.S. company to boast a trillion-dollar market valuation, it became the first to top $2 trillion. Getting to the next trillion may not be such a breeze. With its shares up roughly 60% this year, Apple is among the Big Tech winners that have benefited from a “safety premium.” Investors have piled in to the iPhone maker’s shares as well as those of other technology darlings – including Inc., Facebook Inc. and Google parent Alphabet Inc. –  betting their business models, robust balance sheets and large cash balances would make them more resilient amid the economic fallout from the global Covid-19 pandemic.

Indeed, Apple did post impressive June quarter financial results last month on the back of strong sales, a perfectly timed lower-cost iPhone launch and a boost from government stimulus. But it faces a more uncertain road ahead. First, Apple’s valuation now embeds elevated future expectations. To illustrate, Wall Street’s current consensus for Apple’s fiscal 2020 sales ending this September is just 3% higher than its revenue two years ago. And yet, the stock price has more than doubled in that time frame, resulting in a heady valuation of about 33 times the next four quarters’ earnings.

Apple’s lofty valuation leaves little room for disappointment, but the success of its upcoming slate of products isn’t a sure thing. In contrast to the cheaper iPhone SE model that boosted its June quarter, the company is going to have to convince consumers to buy higher-priced $1,000 iPhones when it launches new 5G-enabled models this fall. And these more expensive phones may be a tough proposition with tens of millions of Americans facing job insecurity. Further, I’m still skeptical there will be new apps anytime soon that will need the faster fifth-generation wireless speeds, making phone upgrades less compelling. Finally, according to a Bloomberg News report last week, it doesn’t look like there will be much innovation coming from Apple on the services front either – just a new virtual fitness-class subscription and some modest subscription bundles.

On top of all this, Apple is facing increased regulatory scrutiny over its dominant position in the smartphone market. In June, the European Union announced it had opened two formal antitrust investigations into Apple, with one of the probes specifically looking into the requirement guidelines of its in-app purchase system. Last month, CEO Tim Cook also had to defend the company’s App Store policies and high fee structure before a landmark House antitrust hearing as well. Obviously, if either of these global regulators clamp down on Apple’s business practices, it could negatively impact its profitability. 

There is no doubt Apple’s stunning ascent to $2 trillion is impressive. The climb to $3 trillion may be even more so, because it will be that much harder.