Watch: Ballimaran comes to Shaheen Bagh! Joint effort of entrepreneur Nazia, her Saudi Arabia-returned foodie hubby
Years ago, food lovers from Okhla had to travel miles to relish Ballimaran Nihari or other non-vegetable delicacies but not anymore as the area has emerged as foodies’ hub with many new eateries opening at regular interval.
Of them Ballimaran opened after Covid-induced lockdown in Shaheen Bagh by entrepreneur Nazia Khan and Saudi Arabai-returned foodie husband Faisal Aziz who worked there as a civil engineer for 12 years in oil and gas industry.
“After settling down in Batla House years ago and getting married to a girl from Ballimaran I with my friends used to visit Old Delhi for non-vegetarian food. So one day after coming from the Middle East I decided to open a Baliimaran Nihari to provide quality mutton nihari and other delicacies to the local residents, saving their time and money spent on travel,” said Aziz, who is from Jaipur.
After studying in a college in Merut, he went to Saudi Arabia where he worked for 12 years and returned back to India after he was diagnosed of lung infection. In India, he joined a work with some MNC but lost his job during Covid-induced lockdown and then he started his new eatery in Shaheen Bagh. The food business was not new for Aziz. While working full time in Saudia, he and his friend started Delhi 6 restaurant in Jubail and it clicked well, he said.
Later on after returning to India, he said he opened one in Jaipur but after getting ill he closed it.
“I kept on my research work in Delhi and went to many places for starting a hotel and at last I opened this one here in Shaheen Bagh and it has worked well with overwhelming response from the people,” he said.
It was in 2013 when he bought a flat in Batla House. “Before opening Ballimaran Nihari, I did lot of experiment and distributed 260 kilogram of nihari among residents, including children, to make sure that the masala and taste was different from others. It was only after this that I opened mine here and later on roped in my wife Nazia to look after family section,” he said.
Nazia, 36, who is mother of two children, said she was more than happy to assist her husband in the business. “It is important that woman should look after their husband’s business,” she said. Nazia looks after the administrative side of the business and looking after the section which is dedicated for women and family only.
Aziz, who planning to do MTech in Civil Engineering from Jamia Millia Islamia, said he also plans to start dastarkhan system for special guest as he has dedicated a small portion of the outlet for it.