Ban Maggi? Nooooo!!!

Aditi Raychoudhury. Twilight Zone. 2004. Pen and Ink. 8 1/2" x 11".
Aditi Raychoudhury. Twilight Zone. 2004. Pen and Ink. 8 1/2
Aditi Raychoudhury. Twilight Zone. 2004. Pen and Ink. 8 1/2″ x 11″.

The ban over Maggi has become national news in India. And, why not? It even featured prominently in a novel I had illustrated – The Loudest Firecracker.

“Maggi you see is more than just instant noodles. In a socialist India where Coca Cola was forbidden, Maggi from Nestle in the 1980s felt almost like cosmopolitanism in a packet..

“Fast to make and good to eat maggi makes a tasty treat. Maggi maggi maggi”
It broke the rules of cooking. Nothing needed to be chopped, ground or grated. It was East meets West, home meets the world. All with a masala flavor. Everyone had a Maggi memory – the schoolchild’s tiffin, the hostel student’s dinner, the newly-married working couple’s trusty stand by.

Unlike instant noodles in the US which was the epitome of the sad loner with a hot-plate, Maggi managed to sell itself in India as piping hot testimonial of mother’s love. The bright yellow packets still carry the legend Mummy I’m hungry. The ads all feature fond mommies.

Maggi’s sunny cheery ads promised us a snack that kids loved and mothers could serve without feeling any deep-fried guilt.”

From Sandip Roy’s report for KALW. 

And, now for a vintage Maggi commercials to bring back fond memories.

The Loudest Firecracker

Aditi Raychoudhury. Dabbawalla. 2006. Pen and Ink.
Aditi Raychoudhury. Dabbawalla. 2006. Pen and Ink.

My illustrations for The Loudest Firecrackerby Arun Krishnan have been published by Tranquebar Press (January 2009).

This will be the fourth book to be published with my illustrations.

Aditi Raychoudhury. Disco Ganapathi. Pen and Ink. 2004.2-twilight-zone.jpg
Aditi Raychoudhury. Twilight Zone. Pen and Ink. 2004.
Aditi Raychoudhury. Man-Lion. Pen and Ink. 2004.
Aditi Raychoudhury. Ebb and Flow. Pen and Ink. 2004.
Aditi Raychoudhury. Death By Fire. Pen and Ink. 2004.

It’s India versus Pakistan and as the excitement soars in the final over of a memorable cricket match, ten-year-old Siddharth sets off a firecracker. The blast that follows will change his life.Siddharth discovers that growing up isn’t easy: he has to handle a tragic death, his best friend is gravitating to a rightwing political party, and his film-maker father has troubles of his own as he shifts away from the commercial but lucrative world of Hindi movies. And Poona is nothing at all like Bombay.

Will tennis matches help, or can his mother’s beautifully retold myths do the trick? Will instant noodles come to Siddharth’s rescue, or will it be his old elocution standby, The Charge of the Light Brigade? In this touching, poignant and often hilarious debut novel, Arun Krishnan has created a world we all recognize, one that will appeal equally to young adults and a more mature audience.

From the Author:

“Please disregard the message on Amazon that says Ships within 1-2 months. It ships instantly, like any other order. I am working with Amazon to get this message removed.

The novel is excellent reading for friends and family, so don’t feel scared to order more than one copy. (I think the Surgeon General recommends 4).

If those friends and family, turn against you, you can use specific portions in Chapter 4 and 9 that can be read out aloud as a form of retribution (recommended by the Government as an effective alternative to waterboarding).”