25 September, 2020

War And Pizza

A prospering class, with no access to night life and such like, sates its pangs on a cuisine blitz

Rahat Dar
War And Pizza
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
Are the housewives in Pakistan on strike?" asked a visiting Indian friend, amazed at the bustling restaurants in Lahore. The eating-out culture has belatedly caught on in Pakistan. The cuisine scene is pulsating, the eateries are mushrooming and there's something for every palate. Federal taxmen say the food industry is one sector which has remained insulated from recession.

The expansion of the urban middle class, though still nowhere near India's, has been the factor in boosting the trend, as has the spurt in the Pakistani women workforce. "Ever since I started working, we've been eating out more frequently. I'm usually too tired to cook. Besides, he doesn't have to pay every time we dine out," says Salma Iftikhar, a cellphone company employee, dining at McDonald's with her husband and three daughters.

But the factor which has given a fillip to the eating-out trend is the shrinking opportunities the middle classes have for letting their hair down. Says Shehla Ahmad, a professor of sociology at the Punjab University, Lahore: "We've no nightlife here. Cinemas are not...
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