Venkatraopalli (Karimnagar): What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet! Uyyala Lachaiah would not have realised that this Shakespearean quote may well be applicable to his small restaurant when he named it ‘Appatimandam’ meaning ‘temporary’ in the local dialect.
While most would opt for a God’s or family name, Lachaiah, a Gulf returnee, opted for this name when one of his relatives sarcastically remarked that any business he starts would be “Appatimandam” suggesting it would be short-lived. The venture has proved to be lucky for the owner from the time he started his business in 2012 at Venkatraopalli in Ramadugu mandal of the district. In fact, it has emerged as a must-visit spot in the area.
‘Appatimandam’, about 20 km from the district headquarters, attracts people from surrounding villages such as Laxmipur, Mangalipalli and Desaipet. Lachaiah earlier worked as a toddy tapper, set up a kirana shop, chicken centre and other businesses after returning from the Gulf, but all of them turned failed ventures.
Within a short period, ‘Appatimandam’ gained popularity, and Lachaiah also started a grocery shop and a chicken centre with the same name.
Having a population of about 2,000, Venkatraopalli is ideally located, having several villages around it. Since the hotel is located in front of the gram panchayat office, many people gather at the hotel for a quick meal or a lazy chat. The bus stand is also nearby and passengers bound for Ramadugu, Choppadandi and Karimnagar find it convenient to grab a quick bite at ‘Appatimandam’.
Workers engaged in Laxmipur pump house, part of the mega Kaleshwaram Lift Irrigation Scheme, can be seen hanging out at the eatery for snacks and tea.
Sharing his experience with Telangana Today, Lachaiah, who belongs to the toddy tappers community, said after his return from Gulf, he got into the family profession, but could not make any money. He then tried his hand at running a grocery and chicken shop, and finally decided to start an eatery.
“While I was wondering about a name for the eatery, something that would be different, one of my relatives said all my businesses were temporarily. That moment, I decided to name the restaurant ‘Appatimandam’,” he said.
With a menu including spicy snack items such as ‘egg-atukulu’, ‘mirchi bajji’, ‘bondam’, ‘puri’ and ‘sarvapindi’, people began visiting the hotel, and it became popular within a short period.
Lachaiah was affected by paralysis four years ago, and his son Shekar now manages the hotel.
The popularity of the hotel can be gauged from the fact that people stop in front of the hotel and take selfies, says Shekar, adding, ‘egg-atukulu’ is the most popular snack in the hotel. The a la carte dishes include chicken and mutton dishes.
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