The incredible journey of Pandey’s Paan started in 1943, with a small paan shop in North Avenue, to the fame and clientele it boasts today. The late Shri Shiv Narayan Pandey worked as a clerk in Grindlays Bank, and subsequently began the small shop with a mere 8 paise. Thus, he forged a legacy that was carried on by his son, Devi Prasad Pandey, who further passed down the mantle to his sons, Hari Om Pandey and Hari Shankar Pandey.
Pandey’s Paan is no stranger to interactions with diplomats, government heads, and reputed politicians. We began supplying to the Rashtrapati Bhawan in 1948, and later to the Hyderabad House. Today, our paan has graced the tables of foreign delegates, VVIPs, and diplomats from all over the world. Yet, Shiv Narayan Pandey’s grounded viewpoint and his single-minded ambition shine through in an anecdote that has been passed down through the generations: Indira Gandhi once offered him a seat in the Lok Sabha. When he heard about the offer, Shri Shiv Narayan Pandey is said to have famously replied, “Hum paan mein choona laga sakte hain, raajneeti mein nahi.” The culture of paan, for the Pandeys, is linked to an innate pride- pride in the creation, in the quality, and in the satisfaction of the consumer. We believe that “customer satisfaction is that fertile tree where the fruits of success blossom”. It is also linked to a culture of taking up a mantle, or responsibilities, and as a goodwill gesture before beginning a new venture. It is this culture which is the motivation behind a painting gifted by the esteemed M.F. Hussain, which depicts Lord Hanuman from a scene in the Ramayan where he uproots the entire Dronagiri mountain to bring to the battlefield so that an elixir made from the Sanjeevani herb could be administered to a gravely wounded Lakshmana. Instead of the Sanjeevani, M.F. Hussain painted betel leaves on Dronagiri, as an acknowledgement to the gravity of responsibility taken up by the Pandeys in charting their own success story. What sets Pandey’s Paan apart, however, is our unique tobacco-less approach to paan. We use no katha, choona, or supari in their creations. As a consequence, our clientele ranges from children as young as 5 years old, to schoolchildren, to women and the elderly. Hygiene is held to the highest standard, with the paan petals being individually washed with filtered water and the staff donning bacteria-free clothing before handling the ingredients. It leaves no red stains on the mouth either, unlike traditional paan. Melting in the mouth within 30 seconds, all that Pandey’s Paan leaves behind is an unforgettable experience of taste, while compelling its consumers to keep coming back for more.