morning, it's just 9.30 and the shop is crowded.
It's surprising to see the otherwise late Puneites
up so early! Could be so because Monday is a weekly
off for the Chitale Bandhu Mithaiwale.
Located in the heart of Bajirao Road, the shop
is spic and span with not a speck of dirt seen
and not a fly in the vicinity! I have an interview
scheduled with Mr. Shrikrishna Chitale, son of
Mr. Raghunathrao Chitale the founder of the shop.
On seeing me he takes me to his cabin which is
a small yet neat cubicle sharing a part of the
kitchen. A passing glimpse of the kitchen shows
heaps of pedhas on the clean and shining floor
while the shop tenders sitting cross-legged, are
putting the pedhas in different sized packets,
segregated in quantities of 500 grams and 1 kilos.
soft-spoken gentleman in his late forties, Mr
Shrikrishna reminisces about the days when his
father started the shop way back in the 1950s.
" It used to be a small shop then and was
situated at Kunte Chowk. By 1956 the business
flourished and the shop was moved to the present
Bajirao Road location. We opened another branch
in Deccan Gymkhana in the same year. My father's
brother, my uncle, Mr. N.B. Chitale, also had
a hand in the expansion". When asked
about the best selling products he replies,"Tons
of Bhakarwadi and 250 kilos of pedhas are sold
everyday. We not only have local customers but
also cater to international customers who log
on to our website". "We accept international
cards and the money gets deposited in our banks.
The item is then home delivered", he further
continues. Though famous as Mithaiwale
they also cater milk and dairy products.
sister firm, Shivsantosh Dugdhalay takes care
of these. Its market share today is 1.5 lakhs
litres everyday!. The other dairy products like
chakka, ghee and butter are also available at
all the sweetshops.
With a smile he concludes, "We strive more
on quality work rather than quantity. And we give
a great importance to cleanliness because we believe
cleanliness is next to godliness!"
The pricelist on the board reads:
Address: 777 Sadashiv Peth, Bajirao
Road, Pune 411 030
Phone: 447 3268
Shop Timings: 9am to 12 30 pm and 4pm
For more information log on to www.chitalemithai.com