72 years old Channi Lal is a tea stall owner. He started his tea service in 1954 on a roundabout at Mahanagar, Lucknow. At that time there were gardens and fields all around. People used to come to his stall for a sip of tea and chit-chat. As time passed, he lost his house during industrialization and started making Poodi-sabzi, dosa and pakode with tea. During a strike in 1972, with no food facility nearby Channi Lal decided to provide free food service to the government officials nearby till the strike continued. At that time, he spent seven to eight thousand rupees on it.
The strike stopped, circumstances normalized but Channi Lal got almost penniless. But the crowd continued to come to his shop and he started earning again.
That was the time when the roundabout named after a tea stall owner “Channi Lal Chauraha”. He has seen the whole Mahanagar developing in front of his eyes. With the shifting of government offices to other places, Channi Lal’s shop remains unoccupied nowadays but he is satisfied with whatever he has. He has got his children married and elder brother educated from this shop.
Everything changed around, but Channi Lal didn’t. He is more like the roundabout from where the roads diverge but he stands alone being firm and strong.