Friday, December 28, 2007


In a major road of South Calcutta - Rashbehari Avenue - there is a very famous shop for Punjabis. Before any wrong ideas set in, let me hasten to clarify that Punjabi in Bengali is actually a kurta. The one you wear with a churidar or a dhoti. The answer as to why a kurta is called a Punjabi is hidden in etymological obscurity so I will not digress from the original objective of this post.

Well, the famous Punjabi shop is called Kimbadanti (meaning, The Phenomenon). And on the signboard, the by-line reads: Kimbadanti - Punjabi Jagater Ek Obishshoroniyo Kirti. And quite helpfully, the English translation is also noted - An Unforgettable Achievement in the Punjabi World.

Very close to Kimbadanti, one more shop has opened (presumably for quite some time now). And it calls itself Badshahi Kurta-r Opratidwandi Durbar. Literally, An Unparalleled Durbar of the Badshashi Kurta.

I was wondering that in other parts of the country, adjectives like Unparalleled and Unforgettable are usually used to describe things like Bhakra-Nangal Dam, Dhirubhai Ambani and Rohit Bal's Fall Collection.
Here, we accord the same respect to kurta boutiques!


dipali said...

What a superlative post!
(As in, full of superlatives).
If a Bengali wears a Punjabi, what does a Punjabi wear?
I wonder where the term originated.

bricks said...

Recently came across a book featuring world graffiti and there was on from the train in India that read - 'Aana free, jaana free, pakde gaye toh khaana free.' There is so much talent and wit in everyday Indian life, I thought.