After Pakistan’s chai-wala, Nepal’s tarkariwali gets famous


A Nepali tarkariwali has shot to fame for her good looks with her photographs carrying vegetables going viral on the internet, days after a handsome Pakistani chai-wala made global headlines.

18-year-old Kusum Shrestha, of Gorkha district, was photographed carrying vegetables at a local market during her vacation. She is a grade 11 student and her father is a vegetable seller.

When the photographer posted the shots online, the hashtags #Tarkariwali and #Sabjiwali – “vegetable seller” – quickly started trending on social media as admirers praised her looks.

Shrestha told BBC Nepali that she is a student in the nearby district of Chitwan, and was helping her parents during college holidays when the snaps were taken.

In one picture, the teenager smiles as she carries crates of tomatoes over a bridge. In another, she is talking on a mobile phone while selling tomatoes at a market.

Photographer RupChandra Maharjan told a Nepalese blog, the Gundruk Post, that he photographed Shrestha at the Fishling suspension bridge between Gorkha and Chitwan.

The young woman said she had found out about the pictures from a friend.

“First my friend asked me if I am the same girl whose photos became viral on Facebook. But I didn’t know,” Shrestha said.

“Then she sent me the pictures and when I saw them, I found it was me. On that day, I came to sell the vegetables to help my parents. When I was on my way to sell the vegetables, RupChandra (the photographer) took my picture – but at that point of time, I didn’t know that I was being photographed,” she said.

Her father Narayan Shrestha, 43, told,”I hear that her photos have become popular on the internet. Who had imagined that she would get such publicity? My daughter has always been a shy girl; she is a girl of very few words.”

Shrestha said his daughter was studying management, although she really wants to train as a nurse.

Her photographs came just days after a Pakistani tea- seller named Arshad Khan broke the internet thanks to his intense blue eyes. He also bagged a modelling deal with a fashion portal.

Retail site has signed on Arshad as a model for an undisclosed amount.

He had become an internet sensation after a local photographer posted his picture on social media and the story was picked up by several media organisations across the globe.