The very phrase “Birbal ki Khichdi” means a dish which never got prepared. But, here in Delhi the very dish not only got prepared, but relished as well by the intellectuals of the National Capital.
Opening the discussion, the Pagman of India Mr Birbal Jha said, “ Khichdi has been the part of the tradition of Maithils since time immemorial. On the auspicious day of Makar Sankranti, the people of Mithilanchal region would talk about various contemporary issues world around. To the best of my knowledge, “Khichdi pe Charcha” has been organized first time here under the auspices of “Mithilalok Foundation”.
The chairman of Mithilalok Foundation further added, “The English equivalent of the very word Khichdi, contrary to the popular belief, is not hotchpotch. The apt word is “mélange”. The very meaning of the word mélange is a mixture, or a group of different things or people.
A mélange of something like food is very much advisable not only in our dietary system but also in our lifestyles and varied cultures that India boasts of. I have good reasons to believe that you all are settled in Delhi, rather could settle in Delhi, because somewhere you have been able to tune yourself with the “Khichdi Culture” of Delhi”.
The author of “Celebrate your Life” Mr Birbal Jha further added, “Khichdi — prepared using rice, pulses, coarse cereals and spices — has been selected as Brand India Food(Nov., 2017) because it symbolises the country’s unity in diversity. And I think the entire India should be thankful to our forefathers who kept the tradition of eating Khichdi alive and gave it the due importance.
Dr. Birbal Jha, who has got the credit of imparting free English courses for Mahadalits in Bihar, further said, “My concept of khichdi goes beyond making and tasting it. For me, it is adjustment---Adjustment of almost every section of the society. A person who is sensitive enough to understand the needs and requirements of every segment of the society, gets qualified to become a leader. An adjustment is what we see between India and Pakistan as “Sanjhauta Express” or “Cricket Match” for that matter. If you share certain degree of warmth with a person, you must know the art of adjustment, the common minimum program, the things we can still do no matter whether the relationship is at the best or it is at the lowest ebb. It is high time we saw Khichdi as mélange and not only a dish.