Kulhads are earthen cups or tumblers that are used to serve a number of desserts and beverages at street-side stalls in India. From lassis to phirni to rabdi and even piping hot chai, kulhads have been the containers of choice for roadside food and beverage sellers. A lot of tea lovers will tell you with fondness the pleasures of sipping their favourite beverage from tiny earthen tumblers. Some may even claim that's the best way of enjoying a cup of delicious desi tea. Now these kulhads may soon start making appearances at all major railways stations, bus depots and even airports across the country.
According to reports, Union Transport and MSME Minister Nitin Gadkari has taken a step towards ensuring kulhads are used instead of plastic cups for serving tea at train stations and bus stops, as well as airports. According to a report by news agency Press Trust of India, the Minister said that he has urged his colleague - Railways Minister Piyush Goyal- to make use of kulhads mandatory at 100 railway stations. He added by saying that even malls will be encouraged to get on-board with this move from plastic tumblers to clay ones.
Gadkari also said that he has instructed the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) to supply equipment for large-scale production of kulhads.
Kulhad, also known as shikora, is fashioned from black clay over pottery turntables. Once the wet mud or clay is given a tumbler-like shape, it is then left in brick klins to bake. Kulhars are unpolished and handle-less as compared to other ceramic cups or tumblers.
These earthen cups have been used by people of the Indus Valley Civilisation for thousands of years, but lately they have been losing out to plastic and Styrofoam cups. Unlike these more popular tumblers, kulhars are re-usable and hence, their use may reduce waste production and plastic use by tea stalls that are present at public places.
About Sakshita KhoslaSakshita loves the finer things in life including food, books and coffee, and is motivated by self-indulgence and her love for words. When not writing, she can be found huddled in the corner of a cosy cafe with a good book, caffeine and her own thoughts for company.