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History of Rosogullas and The Controvery of its Origins

Updated: Jul 21, 2021

Do you love Roshogulla too and want to know how it all started, How something so sweet has been a part of court hearings for months, and where was Roshogulla seen first, Was it the Streets of Bengal or the Temples of Puri or was it totally somewhere you don’t expect but the world just can’t get enough of it. Roshogulla, Rosogulla, Rasgulla, or Rasbari depending on where you’re from you know it by one of these name. The simplicity of this sweet is not the same as its origins,here’s how:

Origin 1:

It is said by the West Bengal Government after authentication of all the documentation regarding it from Mr. Diman Das,Director of K.C Das Sweets that Nobin Chandra Das was the inventor of Roshogulla in the 1868.

Origin 2: The State of Orissa Claims that the temple texts suggests it’s existence nearly 700 years ago, and was invented as a tribute to Lord Jagannath’s eyes. That perhaps explains why rosugulla, especially the Oriya variety, is big and slightly oblong compared to West Bengal rosugulla which resembles a ball.

The story goes that these recipes were a secret and was only limited to the temple but one of the Priests started teaching it the population of village because of the excess of milk that they had, Soon it became a rage and Nobin Das Chandra took it to Bengal as an alternative to dry sondesh but he failed so he invented his own version of it..

Controversy of GI Tags:

GI Tags aka 'Geographical Indication' tags refers to a sign which is used on products possessing some qualities, characteristics, reputation attributable to the geographical origin. There needs to be a clear link between the product and the place of production.1The Act providing protection to Geographical Indications (GI) in India is The Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999.

On the basis of the nature, the products obtaining a GI tag can be divided into 4 categories:

  • Agricultural: For e.g. Darjeeling Tea. from West Bengal;

  • Handicraft: For e.g. Chanderi Sarees from Madhya Pradesh;

  • Manufactured: For e.g. Mysore Sandal Soap from Karnataka; and

  • Food Stuff: For e.g. Bikaneri Bhujia from Rajasthan.

there was no dispute in Bengal’s sweet saga before 2015. The battle started after the West Bengal government applied for a GI recognition from rasgulla. It quoted the history of Nobin Chandra Das to claim the GI tag.

To contest the claims of the West Bengal government, the Odisha government set up a number of research committees. A 150-page report by Jagannath cult researcher Asit Mohanty said that Dandi Ramayan has the first documented presence of rasgulla in Odisha history. Dandi Ramayan, an Odia adaptation of the Valmiki Ramayan, was written in the 15th century.

In the year 2017, the GI registry of Chennai gave West Bengal the GI status to 'Banglar Roshogulla’ in furtherance of an application filed on the behalf of the West Bengal State Food Processing and Horticulture Development Corporation Limited (WSFPHDCL) for obtaining such status.

Later an application was filed in 2018, by the Odisha Small Industries Corporation Limited (OSIC Ltd.) behalf of the State of Odisha. On 29th July 2019, the registrar granted the GI tag to the State of Odisha on 'Odisha Rasagola'.

Now it’s up to you which orgin you believe in but the next time you’re having a delicious rosogulla from K.C Das which you ordered from The Bong Company you’re gonna have to lot to think about.

We at the bong company love rosogulla regardless, and brings you the best of snacks from West Bengal directly to your home.

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