Rolling chapattis? Exhausted from failures to give a nice round shape to chapattis? Not any more!
Chapatti making is now easier than ever as a hitherto little known man from the small township of Magura has single-handedly invented a wooden chapatti maker which can roll up to 900 chapattis, natively known as roti, an hour. And, they all will be perfectly round like a full moon in a clear cloudless sky.
Forty-year-old Humayun Kabir, who graduated from Sheikh Borhanuddin College in Dhaka, has named the chapati maker after his only daughter– Laaibah. The clever device is made of two foldable wooden planks, a lever and a sheet of plastic.
“You can make a chapatti in just two seconds. Just put a ball of dough between the planks, press the lever and you have a perfectly-shaped chapatti,” Kabir told The Daily Star.
The plastic plate attached to the inner sides of the wood planks prevents the dough from sticking to the device, explained Kabir, who is also a self-trained IT professional. He has set up a factory at his residence in Bunagati village under Shalikha upazila to manufacture the device on a commercial basis.
“This device not only helps one save time but is also expected to provide employment opportunities to people,” Kabir said. He said since his childhood, he had always dreamt of doing something innovative.
Although he studied general education, science and technology always attracted him, he added. Kabir started to think about making the device when it occurred to him that making chapattis manually required a lot of time and the process was quite strenuous, especially for women.
“Back in 2011, it took me three months to make a working model and eventually, it evolved as what is known today– Laaibah Roti Maker,” said Kabir with a shimmering smile. The best news is all the models of this device are available within an affordable price range.
Kabir now manufactures three types of chapatti makers at his factory and sells those at Tk 2,850, Tk 5,000 and Tk 6,000 each. Different kinds of chapattis, including normal wheat roti, vegetable roti, Indian butter roti, cheese roti, egg paratha, gobi paratha, luchi and fuchka, can be made using this appliance.
There are some electric chapatti makers available in the local market, but those do not fit to the requirements of the Bangladeshis.
Kabir’s factory now has 13 workers who can manufacture 30 appliances per month which, he thinks, is not enough against the growing demand.
“Whenever someone learns about the appliance, they order for one from across the country and even from abroad,” he said, adding that people from a number of countries, including the UK, the USA, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Singapore, India and Bhutan, have already bought the device from him.
Despite such a huge demand for his invention, Kabir cannot begin a bigger-scale production due to a fund crisis.
“If I get some financial assistance, I believe, I can expand my business very fast,” he said.