Monday, April 15, 2024

‘I’m giving back to the city by fostering animals and curating dairy-free products’

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Simi K, founder of Simi’s World Vegan Cafe, and the first Indian vegan who climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, gets onboard with
The Pioneer over a quick call, sharing her association with the city and more for a women’s day special story.
Tejal Sinha
Undeniably, quite a few people from the population have been opting for rich vegan food, which has been just growing and growing over the years. And one such is Simi K, an entrepreneur. Well, she has had her own journey of shifting into becoming a vegan and started her own Simi’s World Vegan Cafe in Film Nagar. Hailing from a family of animal lovers and being an avid lover herself, she always grew up around a family that focused on living a sustainable lifestyle. “My grandparents were farmers and thus always lived a sustainable lifestyle, till their last breath,” shares the zoophilist.
In fact, during her teenage years, she also volunteered with PFA and Maneka Gandhi, who had really inspired her a lot. Her father being a vegetarian, she did have that influence on her. Though she’d had dairy products, it shook her off when she found out about the behind-the-scenes happenings of the dairy industry. “I began doing more research on what could be the alternative, and that is when I came across vegan food. Though, back then, I didn’t come across anyone who could guide me through the same, and so it was me who started gaining insights myself, and that’s how I started practicing more. And came up with Simi’s World Vegan Cafe.” So we were intrigued to connect with her for our special weekly column of Hyderabond and she was more than happy to share her association with Hyderabad, which has been for more than 20 years now.
“The city has given me a lot of things that I’m very proud of,” gleefully enthuses the first Indian vegan, who climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and created a record. “I can say I am a proud Hyderabadi. I worked here for 20+ years as a journalist on different regional channels, and then I shifted in 2013. Later, I came back before the pandemic. Hyderabad has given me a lot of memories, and now I feel I’m giving back to the city by fostering animals and curating dairy-free products. The people here have been very friendly. I got so many people who had voluntarily helped me out throughout. Though the footfall has been very low, people have been continuously encouraging me. I’m thankful to Hyderabad people and the city.”
Though she hasn’t been much to her hometown, she does feel that Hyderabad has been a much different city from the rest, a city that’s always ready to adopt new things. “Even before me, many people had adopted veganism, and they’ve been my inspiration. I have bagged so many awards during my journalism days in the city. After I started my entrepreneurial journey, people started recognising me just by the way you were taking my interview. It’s a recognition of my work. I left my comfortable work and started a new journey, and people have been appreciating my work.”
Simi, who has also been awarded by Lead India Global, India records for her service to veganism, was also honoured by former deputy speaker of AP Kona Raghupati, who, signing off the quick chat, shared, “I have always seen the positive sides of the city. No matter where a person migrates from, they just love the city. It’s been a historical place. And every zone is different; the old city has a different vibe, the hi-tech city has a different one, and then Secunderabad has a different one. Hyderabad is my home, and now my cafe is going to become an experience center.”
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