Sweet is a very sweet thing for all of us and at the end of all happy things we need sweets. It makes people’s minds happy. Like that ROSOGOLLA(from West Bengal) RASAGULLA(from Odisha)this dessert is very famous in India as well as it is very popular outside the country. Nevertheless, both states battle for their own Gi-tag types of RASGULLA. Now the argument is going on which state is the original inventor of RASGULLA. And after followed by the argument the Battle over the sweet between West Bengal and Odisha got bitter.
HISTORY AND BACKGROUND
The backdrop of the 19th century, there was Nabin Chandra Das, a very famous sweet maker of West Bengal. He was a very inspired character for all of us. He was a resident of Bagbazar, Kolkata he always trying to do something new, and then he invent a new sweet is called ‘ROSOGOLLA,’. It is very spongy, soft, and dip in a sticky syrup of sugar. It is a primary way to make curdled milk (chenna)and sugar. It’s very emotionally attached to all Bengalis and it is an authentic and traditional dessert of West Bengal, and it’s also called, ‘Misti r Raja’. They also claimed that it was made by the legendary Calcutta based confectioner Nabin Chandra Das in 1868 and after that, in the year 1930 his son Krishna Chandra Das also known as K.C Das has introduced the vacuuming packing to preserve sweets well.
Other side Odisha argued that RASAGULLA was invented in the 11th century and a story of Lord Jagannath mollifying an angry Goddess Mahalaxmi with the sweet which today is called Odisha RASAGULLA. This is an essential ritual in Puri, Jagannath temple. The name that was provided to this sweet was ‘Pahala Rasagulla’. Odisha claimed that there was a priest in a temple who taught the villagers the process of curdling milk and from there, the journey of making RASAGULLA was started. For that reason on July 30 the #RasagullaDibasa to mark the festival of NiladriBije celebrated in Odisha. Also, this is a mandatory Dish to be offered to Goddess Mahalaxmi on the last day of the Rath Yatra. In an attempt to bring justice, the Registry has given Orissa three months to present its evidence for the mentioned claim. But the registry rejected Odisha’s rectification petition as the evidence was not presented within the provided time. Instead of sitting back, Bengal also filed a counter statement to defend its claim. And also mention that although Odisha came up with the evidence the given time period was over. Bengal did not show any counter-evidence of Odisha but challenged the technicalities. Bengalis experts are also argued that ROSOGOLLA did not exist in INDIA until the 17th century when the PORTUGUESE introduce the recipe of curdling milk and till that time the INDIA sweets were made with khoya and not with cottage cheese or chenna.
WHAT IS GI TAG
The full form of GI TAG is Geographical Indication, sort of an intellectual property which used to rectify any product’s specific geographical origin or reputation. The registration office of Gi is situated in Chennai. Once Gi is granted it prevents the unauthorized use of geographical indication and gives it a specific identity. A Gi tag can help in branding and marketing local products for sale. Other products that have the Gi tag include Darjeeling Tea, Bhagalpur Silks, Mysore Agarbarti , Kashmir Pashmina and Coorg Orange among others.
ROLEPLAY OF GI TAG
Both the states have different stories, theories, and myths that the origin of rasgulla. Many historians think that RASGULLA is originated in Bengal. In the year of 2017, West Bengal Government filed an application on the behalf of the West Bengal State Food Processing and Horticulture Development Corporation Limited (WSFPHDCL) for acquiring the Geographical Indication tag on the name of BANGLAR ROSOGOLLA. A petition was filed by the Odisha Small Industries Corporation Limited (OSIC) and Utkal Mistanna Byabasayee Samiti (Utkala Sweetmakers Business Body) on the behalf of the State of Odisha for the same ground of originality. Falling to provide significant evidence, the petition was dismissed after the Indian Government got the Gi tag of the name of BANGLAR ROSOGOLLA from the Gi registry office which is situated in Chennai. It was a very proud and joyful moment for every Bengalis. However, Odisha too received a Gi tag for its own version of the RASGULLA, which is slightly different in taste and texture. The glorious side of the battle is that both of the states got their specialized individual rights which brought clarity and transparency along with a ray of sunshine. The endless hard work and belief help both the states (West Bengal and Odisha) to get their respective responses over the Gi tag and that was the victorious moment for both of the states.
From the above discussion, we can clearly understand that heritage plays a big role in every Indian’s emotions. Each and every state has its own creation and unique ideas which they do not want to lose at any cost. Perhaps this is why both states were deeply involved in the sweet fight then regained their sweetness after giving both states the right to their uniqueness and specificity surrounding sweets in the form of Geographical Indications. Intellectual Property Rights, which are important in today’s world where everyone is aware of the fact that they protect their creations, have also been acknowledged as significant in their own way. It should also be noted that the battle proved to be relevant because the people of both states were emotionally involved in the same, which made the battle known to people all over the World. In the end, no matter what the results, RASGULLA will taste just as sweet as any other sweet and we are glad that the sweet war has come to an end and we can all go on our lives, filled with RASGULLAS , without living a chip on our shoulder to say the exact name of where this delicious dessert came from.
Author(s) Name: Moumita Das (Law College, Durgapur)