I am a Hyderabadi and I am proud of being one. Till the merger, the ethos of Hyderabad remained the same for all of us. Though we were of separate beliefs, we had faith in each other. We were Mulkis and this included our Muslims, our Reddys and all our others who lived in the Nizam’s dominion. The Mulkis have been part and parcel of our tradition and culture since time immemorial; to the extent that we together defined Hyderabadi culture. We all spoke the same Urdu and relished the sensitive yet delectable Hyderabadi cuisine in all our homes.
And then it all changed. The red chilli arrived. Post the merger, an influx of cold, ruthless businessmen from Andhra in the south, whose sole intention was expanding their bottomlines, at any cost, infiltrated this beautiful heaven and pounced on our vulnerable, eloquent and trustworthy populace of Hyderabad. The city of old was destroyed. Our cuisine ruined.