The Bangladesh Caterers Association (BCA) has announced the winners of its Caterer of the Year Award 2010, as it urges the government to help preserve the industry.
The winners of each of the 11 regional categories were revealed as Oli Khan, Mridul Kanti Dasn, Athair Khan, Mohamed Ali, Matin Kahn, Mohammed Abdul Ahad, Bodrul Miah, Ala Uddin, Majidul Haqu Choudhury and Tofozul Ahmed.
The winners were selected for their "outstanding achievements amongst their industry peers" by a panel of industry judges, with advice from curry expert Pat Chapman.
The gongs were handed out at the BCA's Awards ceremony in London on Monday night, watched by Bangladeshi dignitaries and several UK politicians.
The ceremony coincided both with the BCA's 50th anniversary, and the 200th anniversary of the opening of the UK's first curry house.
Speaking at the event, Bajloor Rashid, president of BCA, called for the government to lend its support to the curry industry.
“For half a century now, BCA has been the guardian angel of Bangladeshi caterers in UK," he said. "It is inspiration for us that more than two million curry lovers visit curry houses each week in UK. Our members have only three rules: take care of customers, take care of customers and take care of customers. The year ahead presents uncertainty, but we guarantee that BCA will be there.
"We created the curry industry, now it’s the government’s responsibility to preserve it.”
Newly elected leader of the Labour Party, Ed Miliband voiced his support for the BCA and the curry industry, saying in a statement: "The BCA has made an enormous contribution to Britain and I’m incredibly proud of the Labour party’s contribution to your cuisine. I want to pay special tribute to Bajloor Rashid, president of BCA, for the amazing work he does, and I’m looking forward to working with you on our common concerns.”
BCA Caterers of the Year 2010 winners
Oli Khan, Surma Finest Indian Takeway, Stevanage, Hertfordshire
Greater London (East)
Mridul Kanti Das, Memsaheb on Thames Restaurant, Docklands
Greater London (West)
Dinesh Bhatessa, Mint Leaf Restaurant & Bar, Haymarket
Athair Khan, The last Days of the Raj, Gateshead, Tyne & Wear
Mohamed Ali (Saju), Shajan Indian Restaurant, Blackburn, Lancashire
Scotland and Northern Ireland
Matin Khan, Itihaas Restaurant, Dalkeith, Scotland
South East Region 1
Mohammed. Abdul Ahad, Jaipur Restaurant, Milton Keynes
South East Region 2
Bodrul Miah, Turmeric Gold Restaurant & Bar, Tonbridge, Kent
Ala Uddin, Spice Bengal Restaurant, Calne, Wiltshire
Majidul Haque Choudhury (Mintu), Café Tamarinds Pan Asian Cuisine, Coventry
Tofozul Ahmed, Café India Restaurant, Swansea