New Jersey Governor praises, pays respect to late Indian American restaurateur

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Dilip Mehta, 3rd from right, with members of his family. Mehta died in October from coronavirus. New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy paid homage to him Nov. 9, 2020 at a press briefing. Photo: courtesy Governor Phil Murphy Twitter

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, during his press briefing Nov. 9, 2020, praised late restaurateur Dilip Mehta of Dimple Bombay Talk restaurant, who died from contracting the coronavirus.

“He became a cornerstone of Edison’s Indian American community,” Gov. Murphy said. He also recognized two others who died of the virus.

Mehta started Dimple’s Bombay Talk restaurant in 1989 in Iselin, New Jersey. He ran the restaurant with his daughter-in-law, Jahnavi until he passed away in October after contracting COVID.

Conde Nast, in 2013, described Dimple’s Bombay Talk as a hit restaurant serving Bombay-style sandwiches and chaat to a crowd of NRIs, locals and students from nearby Rutgers and Montclair State universities. The restaurant’s Junglee Jumbo sandwich was voted ‘Best vegetarian He-Man sandwich in all of USA’ by the New York Times.

Gov. Murphy said, “Today we remember Edison restaurateur Dilip Mehta. He came to the United States from his native India; he was a Bombay (Mumbai) native, in the 1980s. In India, he was a professor of mechanical engineering who continued to counsel his former students long after they left his classroom, and many, by the way, became lifelong friends,” Governor Murphy recounted.

“In New Jersey, he could be found at any of his Bombay Talk restaurants throughout Edison and Woodbridge, which he founded in 1988. The restaurants became an extension of what he loved most about teaching: interacting with others and helping those who could use a hand and a good meal.”

“Even at the age of 76, Dilip would say and I quote him, “God has blessed me with an eternally young heart.” That sentiment would usually be followed by a good joke, by the way. That is the man his family knew best and his love for them was what powered him through his days.”

Mehta is survived by his wife, Rupa who also tested positive for COVID, their daughter Pielle, son Jignesh, and daughter-in-law Jahnavi, along with his three grandchildren Ishan, Isha, and Ansh. The Governor urged those present to pray for Mehta’s wife Rupa.

“He also leaves a broad extended family including many in India and of course, he leaves many friends and all those customers he treated as his own family,” the Governor said.

“We thank Dilip for bringing a little more joy to everyone he served. May he be remembered fondly and god bless him, watch over him and his family. And may he continue to bless everyone who has lost someone close, whether they be a family or friend, throughout this pandemic.”

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