Tea being served in kulhads at railways stations is set to make a comeback, and although the idea was introduced 16 years ago and petered out due to the lack of effective implementation, the need to usher in plastic-free environment has given the idea the right kind of push.
After Railway Minister Piyush Goyal announced that tea will be sold in kulhads at railway stations, the development brought back memories of a similar move announced by the then Railway Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav in 2004.
The decision to implement the use of kulhads is expected to generate employment and also help in reducing usage of plastic.
Saurabh Uboweja, Managing Partner, BOD Consulting, feels this move is a big shift forward, although there are issues related to hygiene that remain as recycling of some used kulhads remains a possibility.
"The big motive behind this move is to reduce plastic usage. One of the big challenges that India is facing is moving towards towards sustainable packaging and sustainable serving solutions. The Indian Railways sees huge consumption of food products by passengers on a daily basis, and it is a very positive move by Piyush Goyal. This time I hope it is going to be an irreplaceable change as it will also create many employment opportunities. But there are concerns related to hygiene as there are chances that they may be recycled," he told Moneycontrol.
At present, tea is served in kulhads at almost 400 railway stations and when Lalu was the Railway Minister, even lassi was served in kulhads.Uboweja added that the move to introduce kulhads at railway stations couldn't have come at a better time and the Railways is the right organisation to provide the impetus.