Down Syndrome Doesn’t Stop This Chef From Breaking Stereotypes

On World Down Syndrome Day, meet a young chef who runs a small restaurant in Navi Mumbai.

Fit Connect
2 min read

(21 March is observed as World Down Syndrome Day. In light of it, FIT is republishing in this story.)

A tiny restaurant inside a mall in Navi Mumbai has been creating quite a buzz. Aditi’s Corner has seen the likes of MasterChef Vikas Khanna drop by. What makes it so special? Head chef/owner Aditi Verma takes lunch orders, makes bills, and takes care of the customers simultaneously. What makes her popular with her customers is her warm smile.

Aditi Verma, 23, also happens to have Down Syndrome.


Aditi’s parents recall a not so happy time. As a child, neglected by school and the neighbourhood children, Aditi was often upset.

“Why don’t children play with me?,” was her common refrain, her parents recall.

Once we went to pick up Aditi from school, we couldn’t find her anywhere and the teachers had no clue of her whereabouts. On searching the classroom, we saw her lying under a table where she had slept. We then knew a special school is where her place is.
Amit Verma, Aditi’s Father

Aditi was sent to a special school where she was taught special skills and was groomed, but one question always bothered her parents: “What after us?”

Aditi’s favourite show on TV was Masterchef India, and she was a big fan of Chef Vikas Khanna. Aditi’s parents noticed her skills in the kitchen and encouraged her to set up a restaurant.

Today Aditi runs her restaurant with with a lot of confidence. And talks about taking it big.

“I want to open a 5 star hotel where I want people like me and want to uplift them. I want society to know we can also do anything, it is just that they need to trust us and help us achieve our goals.”
Aditi Verma

Camera: Sanjoy Deb

Editor: Kammaljiit Kainth

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