#MyStory Meet Hydrabad’s ethical animal-lover Manohar Chaudary
Meet Manohar Choudary, who comes from a small village in Andhra Pradesh, but currently, lives and works in Hyderabad. He has been vegan for the last one and half years and is loving his new lifestyle. Here is what Manohar had to say about his vegan and volunteer activist journey.
VF: What made you turn vegan?
Manohar: The only thing that made me vegan is "Ethics". I strictly follow ethics since my childhood. I was raised as a non-vegetarian in childhood. When I was 17 I got to know that eating meat is very cruel towards animals and is unethical. It was then that I decided to turn vegetarian. I had been vegetarian for around six years. I didn't know about the cruelty in dairy industry at that time. I got to know about Veganism two years back, that’s when I started thinking about it and finally turned vegan after a few months.
VF: How did you hear about veganism?
M: I first got to know about veganism through Facebook. I had a rabbit when I was in my 11th and 12th standard. I use to follow the PETA and MFA pages on FB when I was in my graduation. I don’t remember how it happened but I joined the Hyderabad vegans and vegans in Hyderabad groups. That is where I got to know about veganism. The turning point was when I attended a vegan potluck in 2015 and got to taste vegan cuisine and meet more people who explained veganism to me in depth.
VF: Who are the people who have helped you on your vegan journey?
M: Sowmya and Sameer initially helped me to start my vegan journey. I met these two guys first. They helped me to know more about Veganism and supplements and alternatives. Abhishek Dubey from Gonda (UP) inspired me to become a volunteer.
VF: What drives your passion for a life that is cruelty-free?
M: Again my answer is "ethics". And I realised that we don't lose anything if we choose a cruelty-free lifestyle and we have alternatives for everything, We can help the innocent living beings from our side by choosing a cruelty-free lifestyle.
VF: Are you the only one in your friend group/ family that's vegan?
M: Yes I am only the vegan in my friend group/ family. But my younger sister turned a vegetarian after I turned vegan and now she is in transition mode. My mother is vegetarian by birth and I convinced her to go vegan, so she is also in transition mode now.
VF: What advice do you have for people your age who don't know about veganism?
M: I advise to them is to research about it on the internet since there is a lot of info available. Also, I suggest that they watch documentaries such as What The Health, Cowspiracy and Earthlings. But I am always open to talking and giving more information about it.
VF: What was the hardest part of turning vegan, anything you struggled with?
M: I don't think that turning vegan is hard, but honestly one thing made me hesitate to turn vegan. I was wondering what happens to all the cows/buffalos if everyone becomes vegan? Definitely, all those animals will be sent to slaughter, since they will be useless for dairy farmers and capitalists. I had a few arguments with other vegans on this. But later I got to know the fact that the world is not going be vegan overnight. Finally, I got the solution myself for this and turned vegan.
VF: What role did FIAPO and the living free community play in your decision to become vegan?
M: I turned vegan before I knew about FIAPO. So there was no role of FIAPO in my decision to become a vegan. But for the activism, we have the support of FIAPO in Hyderabad, which is really helping to spread the word of veganism
VF: What is your favourite vegan dish?
M: Any dish with onions and mushrooms are my favourite. So, onion dosa and mushroom dosa are my favourite dishes. I get my favourites from Mobile food trucks in my city.
VF: What is your favourite part of being a young vegan?
M: Being a young vegan, I am able to stop contribution for cruelty and environmental destruction from a young age. So, I can lead most of my life cruelty-free, of course, there are many vegans who are younger than me. I am very proud of them and all of them are an inspiration for me. Also, being an activist I am able to educate more people and can save more lives.
VF: Is it hard being a vegan in Hyderabad?
M: No, It is not hard to be a vegan in Hyderabad, for me being a vegan even on a deserted island is not a hard thing. Our city is almost vegan-friendly. We are even trying to make it more vegan-friendly.
VF: What are the best places in Hyderabad to eat yummy vegan food?
M: Usually I don't concern about taste. I believe that we just need something to eat. So obviously I can get yummy food everywhere in Hyderabad. I like eating at road side food trucks and food courts the most though
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