Celebrated mango grower Haji Kalimullah has come out with a new variety called ‘Modi Mango’. He hopes that it will reach Prime Minister Narendra Modi so that he can taste this royal fruit named after him. Kalimullah is a Padma Shri awardee famous for growing scores of mango varieties and naming them after celebrities.
"I had kept the first fruits of the Modi mango variety solely for the Prime Minister but I do not have a medium to send them to him. It is my wish that I can offer him the king of fruits myself and I am confident that he will love it. It is full of flavour and is also beautiful to look at. The fruit skin bears lines of crimson giving it a very rare and appealing hue,” says Kalimullah.
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Kalimullah has orchards in the mango belt of Malihabad located on the outskirts of Lucknow. The noted mango grower has a particular tree bearing fruits of 300 different varieties. He has prepared five saplings of the 'Modi mango' and wants to present them to the Prime Minister. It is a cross between Kolkata's Husn-e-Aara and Lucknow's Dussehri.
Kalimullah, a Class VII drop out who has earned recognition far and wide for his innovations, said that he finds it surprising that dignitaries coming to Lucknow find time to visit his orchards. "Foreign delegates coming to the SGPGI came over recently and were delighted to see the different varieties," he adds.
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He has earlier named his mango varieties after Aishwaryia Rai Bachchan and Sachin Tendulkar. Kalimullah reveals that unlike others who develop fruits through the grafting process, he crosses flowers and sows their seeds as every seed is different from the other. But this is a very arduous process and the success rate is low. Nevertheless, the ones that succeed are worth the time and energy as they grow into rare samples.