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Kashmir’s lone food artist says skill key to getting opportunities in tourism, hospitality sector

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Waris Fayaz

Handwara, Jan 10 : A 30-year-old man from north Kashmir’s Handwara who claims to be Kashmir’s lone food carving artist insists skill is key to career growth in the hospitality and tourism sector.

Javeed Ahmed Malik of Panditpora in Handwara did his master’s degree in tourism and travel management and a diploma in food production from Institute of hotel management in Srinagar. Besides he has done a diploma in ice-carving from Chennai and a short term course of a fruit and vegetable carving from Thailand.

Currently a faculty member at food craft Institute Jammu, he has been a chef at well-known reputed hotels in the Valley for eight years.

Malik told news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that he was inspired by a professional executive chef at Pahalgam hotel, where he used to be a trainee.

“Initially, my family was reluctant but I managed to convince them and the outcome is in front of all now. I am earning a minimum of Rs 20000 for a day for food display at five-star hotels while 10000 to 15000 for pre-plating garnish,” he said.

Malik said he receives calls, texts to teach the art almost on a daily basis. “I am now conducting workshops to impart training and so far I have successfully conducted a few workshops in Sopore. There is an acute need for food presentation in Kashmir hotels as there must be a difference between a Kashmiri cook (Waza) and a professional chef,” he said.

Malik said that people especially unemployed should go for skill based courses as it can open opportunities in the hospitality and tourism sector—(KNO)

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