Chef from viral Test Kitchen Karen video glad people are talking about unfair treatment of restaurant staff

Chef from viral Test Kitchen Karen video glad people are talking about unfair treatment of restaurant staff

Asad Monga is overwhelmed by the support he received but this isn't the first time he has had to deal with a rude customer.
Updated 08 Oct, 2021

Karachi-based eatery, Test Kitchen by Okra’s recent encounter with a desi Karen (or should we say Kiran?) has been the talk of the town since footage of it went viral recently. Reactions from all corners of the internet have branded ​the unidentified woman's behaviour as outrageous. However, what may look like a rare display of ignorance is actually an all too common encounter for Asad Aamir Monga, a chef at Test Kitchen and the man who was seen bearing the brunt of desi Karen’s tantrum in the video.

Monga told Images that what triggered the woman's verbal onslaught was the staff’s request to present her vaccination card as per the government’s directive. “When she entered the premises, she was asked to show her vaccine card, which she refused to show," he said. Things got worse from there.

"Who are you to ask me about my vaccination card?" the unidentified woman demands in the video, pointing a phone in Monga's face.

"You are in violation. You are in violation of me," she declares. "You are in terrible violation of the Constitution of Pakistan."

After calling him "an idiot" for wearing a mask, the woman declares that the restaurant staff are "asking me for my medical private records".

But this isn't the first time they have had to deal with a rude customer. “Of course things like this have happened in the past, he said. “Lots of people have misbehaved or been obnoxious with me and my team members. But they never get documented or caught on camera. This was the first time one of our crew members started making a video when the customer started making a ruckus. It became a great opportunity to shed light on what people in hospitality have to go through. Some people just want to make trouble.”

People in the service industry often bear the brunt of customers' entitlement and rudeness. “In the past, there have been other very unpleasant people with whom we've had to interact. They were unpleasant with the boys in my team, calling them names and cursing at them. We'd then have to speak to such customers, or ask them to leave,” he said. One incident that wasn't caught on camera was when someone wiped his chocolate covered fingers on Monga's mask after being asked to pay for his food.

Apparently, customers get particularly nasty when they’re asked to show their vaccination cards. “There have been other instances in which people think they are doing us a favour by showing us their vaccination cards. 'Just take our word that we've been vaccinated' they would say and are generally being difficult,” Monga explained.

The chef has made it a point to document the difficult behaviour he experiences as being part of the hospitality industry. “If you read some of the posts on my Instagram page, I usually try to highlight some of these issues,” he said.

“They do affect me and the people I work with — the people who are like family to me. I am spending more than 12 hours a day with these people and I try my best to train them or tell them that it is not okay to be treated badly by guests.

"The customer is not always right. You have to stand your ground. You, as a person, have your own integrity, which you need to keep. Since the pandemic, I feel like the burden of all civility or basic courtesy has fallen on hospitality professionals or other professionals who are in the service industry because people have become increasingly very, very difficult to deal with.”

Support for Monga and Test Kitchen online has been overwhelming. Everyone, from regular customers to celebrities and people who have never even heard of Test Kitchen, has been praising the team for their calm response and joining in on the Karen jokes.

Singer Natasha Noorani, actor Usama Khan, actor-singer Junaid Khan and even anonymous internet sensation Swineryy have posted about the incident, calling out the woman, not to mention a number of politicians and even the Sindh government spokesperson, Murtaza Wahab.

The video has even received the Swineryy and Ali Gul Pir treatment.

The chef is pretty overwhelmed at the support he and his team have received from people. “I have received an overwhelming amount of empathy from people and it has been extremely humbling to me to know there are so many people out there who were kind and very respectful and they really care about this incident that happened. They were genuinely upset by this lady's behaviour,” he said.

“I am very grateful that this entire thing got a lot of traction,” he continued. “A lot of people made memes about it, they are sharing it. This is good because it is creating a certain dialogue, it is creating awareness. People are talking about things which were previously in the shadows — like people being treated unfairly, especially in [the] service [industry]. I do wish this helps enable people to revaluate themselves or others and just be a little kinder to each other.”


Jahan Ara Oct 08, 2021 07:43pm
A rude uncivilised woman. By wearing western attire and by speaking rudely in English she is thinking she has achieved some thing noble. Whereas, her entire personality is claiming that she is an illiterate, uncivilised, rude woman.
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well-wisher Oct 08, 2021 08:20pm
This woman has no dignity and talks about human right and Constitution of PK? She belongs behind bars and authorities can find out who she is and charge her for disturbing peace. Even in the West vac-proof is required and enforced for our safety. The Test Kitchen did not make the rules.
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Shabnam Oct 08, 2021 09:45pm
Being a doctor myself I never realized that other people working outside hospital environment also come across sick people and sickest of minds. I applaud the courageous people in hospitality industry who deal with all sort of holes "day in & day out.
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Just Saying Oct 08, 2021 11:21pm
Human rights start with humans. Did you not think other guy is human who is trying to protect his customer from Covid and Viruses like you? Did he film you even when you started tantrums at his private business place? Crazy people like her make every human look bad.
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GreenAura Oct 09, 2021 12:13am
Well done sir for standing up to human rights activism.
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Zulfiqar Oct 09, 2021 01:39am
Can’t imagine what’s meted out to people working in the service industry in the less affluent areas of Pakistan. Judging by this video, they probably get 10 times worse.
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Fastrack Oct 09, 2021 01:47am
When you're not the only person in the room having a camera.
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JUR USA Oct 09, 2021 05:01am
Is this the only constitutional right being violated in the country?
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Robin Mitha Oct 09, 2021 05:09am
Not just during Covid and not just in restaurants. I have witnessed customers being very rude and unfair to sales assistants and other staff at shops. A little more respect and regard for human dignity would be nice. Let's all strive for it .
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TenJee Oct 09, 2021 05:22am
You see now? The real toxicity in Pakistan is that of entitlement of the privileged, made worse by their readiness to switch into a full post-colonial English is better power trip. What we have to ask ourselves is everyone in Pakistan acquired wealth and privilege, would we all turn into this person? The first thing you lose when you gain wealth is humility. This person shows why so many of the masses are rightly suspicious and agitated by secular liberals and their rights activism and socially progressive concerns.
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Johnpauljones Oct 09, 2021 07:28am
Important to identify the women in the video and make her realise her folly.
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Amir Shah Oct 09, 2021 09:10am
Unfortunately privileged few still believe tat they are gods gift to earth and they cant treat other with no respect. Such people must be exposed and name shame them, no need to hide their faces or names.
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Anonymouseee Oct 09, 2021 01:28pm
The chef and his team indeed showed a lot of patience during the ruckus created by the shameless woman. Hats off to them.
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Iqbal Hadi Zaidi Oct 09, 2021 02:26pm
The lady in question must come back to the place to tender unconditional apology for her misbehavior which will lift her up and all will appreciate her but if she does not do alike she will be cursed instead. Being out of my beloved Pakistan since 1976, I not only wonder but question as well as if police can be informed about the incident? In civilized society none behaves like she did and if at all someone behaves against the civilized norms, the person tenders apology instead being rude like her. I am pretty confident that after reading my comments, the lady will definitely apologize, inshaallah. Iqbal Hadi Zaidi /
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Cye Oct 09, 2021 02:51pm
Some human rights activists are on pay roll of foreign countries to further their agendas, she looks like one of them.
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sufyan Oct 09, 2021 03:08pm
cost effective publicity by okra
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Ibrahim S Oct 09, 2021 08:32pm
Amazing , the whole conversation was in Pakistani elite’s unofficial “national” language - I am impressed . I would like to watch the similar confrontation in Urdu and of course in Punjabi ( with more spicy tone)
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JS Oct 09, 2021 09:27pm
The womanhood a tantrum and walked out. She may have had misguided opinions on the vaccine but honestly, many others in this country do. She had a bad day, got angry, but didn't do anything remotely close to what those Western "Karens" are shamed for (calling the police, resorting to physical violence). This constant shaming of a woman throwing a tantrum is distasteful. We have all been involved in publicly embarrassing incidents of either a small or a large scale. Let's talk about this womanwhen she actually does something harmful.
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THE Oct 10, 2021 03:00am
What a Karen !!
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