The Silicon Review
Food trends have changed quite a lot, and making healthy food choices has become increasingly difficult for the ever-busy modern day humans. However, the topic is as unique as the concept of healthy food. Although, consumption of food is a bare physical necessity, it is also not wrong to say that most of the times eating is not driven by hunger. People eat when they are celebrating, meeting their friends and family and also when they are bored, lonely or sad. Therefore, the issue is to make people shift to healthy food habits from unhealthy, fatty and high-calorie foods.
Speaking of healthy, nutritious and nourishing foods, it is indeed our pleasure to introduce Indian Paratha Company, a restaurant set on the outskirts of Bengaluru that puts in the extra efforts to serve fresh and healthy food to people across the country.
Nirmal Sandhu, Founder of Indian Paratha Company, spoke exclusively to
The Silicon Review. Below is an excerpt.
Why was your company set up? How have you expanded your company and its offerings over the years?
I basically come from an International Logistics business. All through my life I have been traveling every nook and corner of the world, and I’ve seen that there are no right kinds of restaurants on the highways in India. Moreover, finding fresh food is quite tough over there. Usually they have a central kitchen, and the food that you order over there is just reheated and served to you. They lack nutritional value. So I always felt that eating at such places is a problem after all. This is how I came up with the concept of serving fresh food to people from every part of the country.
Indian Paratha Company was founded in the year 2014 by Nirmal Sandhu and his wife, Gunjan Sandhu, a nutritionist, who has also designed the well-balanced and nutritious menu of IPC. The restaurant got a boost when I planned a visiting to Gurudwara/ Sikh temple of our tenth master, Guru Gobind Singh ji at Hazur Sahib in Nanded, Maharashtra. I drove all the way till there, but I didn’t find any decent place where I could take a break or use the washroom. Then I thought that this national highway 7 was the right spot to open the first signature restaurant. So this is why we chose Devanahalli which is the startup point of Bengaluru-Hyderabad highway.
Initially, I also did a lot of R&D. I wanted to make something unique, and I was already prepared to make Indian Paratha Company a global brand as none of the Indian food chains are truly global. At Indian Paratha Company, we wish to serve food that can be eaten by people from every country. I thought if I am doing this, let me do it in a way that the food could be enjoyed by the young, the old and the middle aged. So I created a concept where four generations can eat together on a table. And the food is all fresh.
There is nothing more important for a successful small business than a well-defined mission and vision. How have you framed your mission and vision statements?
Our mission and vision is very simple. We want to be a global brand and serve healthy and fresh food to people from every part of the world. If you take a look at our concept, you will see that we stay away from anything unhealthy. We serve ‘Paratha’, that’s made of wheat and is stuffed with various vegetables and farm fresh dairy products. Every paratha is served with curd which is a natural probiotic and pickle that’s prebiotic as well as freshly made green chutney rich in chlorophyll. We serve special barbecue appetizers and starters along with that. We also serve a unique dish that was invented and patented by IPC, known as the ‘Parathzzaa’. It looks like a pizza but is more healthy and nutritious as it is wheat-based, barbecued in wood fired oven and topped with farm fresh vegetables.
Actually, people have a different perception about Indian food. But we serve Indian food with a lot of aroma and flavours of Indian spices that’s not just curry exactly because with basic food you can’t go wrong anywhere. We serve Indian food with a fusion. We Prepare Lassi, which goes very well with Indian Food, we also serve various Ice Teas, Shakes & Fresh Juices. But we do not serve any Fizzy Drinks. We are more on the health food side. We are one of its kind, and we are unique.
What is it in you that make you different from others?
Either restaurants are fine dine or fast food, but we’re one of its kind. We work with a ‘FFC’ model – Fresh, Fast and Casual. Every order is freshly prepared and served. Our seating is casual, so you don’t have to be worried whether you’re in shorts or morning dress. It’s not a place where you will have to very well-dressed to come. We have a pretty chilled out environment at our place. We are electronic detoxify hangout as we are eco-friendly and we are located in the outskirts of the city where people get closer to nature, enjoy the serenity and relax.
As there is no FFC model in the market, we are unique. We are a fusion. The décor of our restaurant reflects the European-American feel, and the whole wooden chalet has been imported from Canada. IPC Design has been awarded by VM-RD for the best look and feel Retail Outlet. We serve Indian food with the fusion touch and enhanced food concept.
What would you say were the factors that influenced you the most in creating your business success?
I come from a Sikh family. My father, late Sardar Ganga Singh Sandhu was a veteran in the army. He fought many wars including the Second World War. I have been mentored by my elder brother, Mr. R.S. Sandhu who is a successful business man and founder of Wilson Sandhu Logistics (India) Pvt. Ltd. Their teachings have contributed in helping me build my business.
I was also influenced by an article by Dr. Abdul Kalam that mentioned about Indians going abroad and coming back to crib about our country. But the thing we need to realise is we live in a democracy. We enjoy democracy and at the same time, we regret and complain about the system and the government. Instead of complaining, why can’t we add value and contribute something?
Rather than cribbing on a highway about the absence of necessary things, I thought I can contribute something. That is how I came up with the idea of this restaurant, so that people can enjoy safe and fresh food as well as use clean toilets.
How has the journey been so far? Where do you see yourself in a couple of years from now?
The journey was very good because we thought we could make a difference and we are doing pretty good at it. IPC is quite popular among bikers and people of all age groups in and around Bengaluru. We are also well-appreciated by bloggers and media. The journey is very good now, and we want to thank all of our customers for believing in us and we will continue to satisfy them.
Coming to our future plans, we hope to open 200 outlets considering our consistency in the recent years. We have been making profits and now we have four restaurants of our own across India. Moreover, people have been calling us from all over the globe to be associated with us. So it looks like we have a long way to go and there’s no looking back.
Knowing the man behind Indian Paratha Company
Nirmal Sandhu, Founder
When Nirmal Sandhu decided to start the Indian Paratha Company he had a singular vision of serving fresh, healthy and delicious food without any preservatives and artificial colours. He strongly feels that the entire experience of eating is a celebration and one that does not involve standing in line and eating out of paper boxes.
With modern lifestyles and processed foods contributing to health issues it becomes more important according to Mr. Sandhu, to eat healthy even if you find yourself on the highway! He looks forward to taking the concept of Indian Paratha Company across the country.
“Our meals are wholesome, healthy and hearty. We ensure that your meal is well balanced without any artificial flavors.”