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Dipti Nair
Tea or chai is one of the favourite drinks of those from the Indian sub-continent. It's generally made with dried tea leaves, milk, sugar and a variation of spices that differs from community to country. But now a plumber from the tea-loving country of Bangladesh brings a variety of colours and flavours from the region in a single cup of tea.
Abdus Salam Ful, 32, is a plumber who has been working with a contracting company in Qatar for the last six years. A tea-maker in his country, he left his hometown and came to Qatar looking for better prospects, bringing with him the rare talent of preparing multi-layered tea.
Ful can put up to seven colours in his multi-layered tea, and each colour tastes different. The different layers in his cup are green tea, black tea with mint, ginger tea, karak and light milk tea. The layers stay separated in the cup and as you drink it, you can taste each flavour one after another, giving you the unique experience of different tastes in a single cup.
It is not easy to create layers from liquids, each of which has a different consistency and thickness, and to ensure that they don't mix in the cup. Ful said that he learned this technique from his relative, who runs a very successful tea shop in his hometown of Sylhet in Bangladesh.
"My relative created this concept and it became so popular in Bangladesh that he was even featured in many magazines and TV shows. I learned the technique from him. I am probably the only one he has taught this to. It is relatively simple but just needs a lot of practice to perfect," said Ful.
But Ful refuses to share the secret of his layered tea with anyone.
"This is my secret. I haven't seen anything like it anywhere in Qatar and I refuse to share my recipe and technique with anyone.
"Fate brought me here. I thought I will make more money and will support my family better from here. But I have spoilt my life and any chance at success by coming here and working as a plumber. I would probably have had a better life back home. But, I spent a lot of money to come to Qatar and so I have no choice but to continue living here until my debts are paid," he said.
Abdus Salam Ful comes from a family of 14 members, including step-mother, step-siblings, wife and three children including his infant twin daughters. He is the only earning member of the family.
"My dream is to work in a restaurant where I can make my special tea. It can be a very profitable business as the expenses to make it are very low and the customers will enjoy the drink. They will definitely keep coming back for more. I just hope someone will give me an opportunity for doing that. I would be very happy if I can use my talent in tea-making for turning my life around and providing a better life for my family," said Ful.

To contact Abdus Salam Ful or to know more about his seven-coloured tea, write in to [email protected].
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