“One who has experienced pain can only feel the happiness and to feel the happiness, one must take the pain.”
This is a statement of Geeta Chaudhary, a resident of Lamahi Municipality ward no 8, Gidhniya. She is has been recognized I,n the community as one of the smiling, agile and extremely laborious women entrepreneurs these days. Chadhary, who succeeded in getting recognition of being a women entrepreneur has her miserable past life. As Geeta recalls her past, her heart still shakes. She had gone through extreme poverty and famished state. Her pain and worry mounted as her husband also suffered from a disease known as sickle cell in those days. The treatment of her husband gave different pain when it was difficult to get daily food to eat. Geeta, who has struggled a lot against so many ups and down of life has changed he
r life slightly in the past years. She has become a successful entrepreneur due to her own consistent work, commitment, self confidence, regularity and courage. She was born on October 1, 1987 at Chuhiya of Gadhawa rural municipality. Laborious Geeta since her childhood had to go to neighboring country India after she completed her study of class eight. That was a time of Maoist insurgency in Nepal when the life was very difficult to survive. That’s why Geeta’s father sent her to Indian town of Gorakhpur where his elder brothers used to live. Chaudhary households in those days used to work as bonded laborers in others’ houses, even if they had lands. They also had to work as tenants in others’ farms. In the year 2008, Geeta was married to Krishna Raj Chaudhary, a resident of Lamahai Municiaplity-8, Gidhaniya under arranged marriage when she was 21 years old. For a woman, it was a strange house which she should make her own by winning the hearts of the family members. On top of that it was a unitary family. Everyone used to be busy in their own works. Geeta had become a complete house wife after her marriage. But gradually her husband started getting sick. He could not move with heavy loads and was ultimately bed ridden. It was a time to know and test who actually was on your side and who on the opposite side. The household members did not support Geeta in her suffering. Instead the household members separated the rice and asked her to cook separately for her family. She had her tiny child huddled in her lap and her sick husband to take care of. Then Geeta’s miserable days full of pain and worries started. But, Geeta took these miserably painful days as an opportunity to do something and started struggling hard. The sick and bed ridden husband’s disease was not diagnosed any where until he was taken to Nepalgunj and was diagnosed that he was suffering from sickle cell. The doctor in Nepalgunj told that the person suffering from this disease must continue to take medicines for his entire life and the disease will grow less effective as the person grows older. Her husband is now on regular medication. But now he is not sick like before. Her husband Krishna Raj now works for a local cooperative office. Despite his work in cooperative office, Krishna spares his time in the morning and evening to give full support to his wife Geeta in exploring the market for her professional agricultural products, shop, ducks, local chicken, pig farm, farm boiler. Geeta has a six years old small daughter. The couple is conscious of the fact that their daughter should get a good education from a good institution according to Krishna.
Geeta once again looked back to her past cycle of time and said, “There was a time when I was not trusted for even Rs 50 to 100 in loan in this village. When I used to go out of the house for some special purpose, the people used to shut their doors for me thinking that I was out to beg with them. Many people also advised me that I could forsake my sick husband and get married to someone else when I was still young enough. These things were very painful for me. But I never shared these feelings with my sick husband as I thought it would be more painful to him either. So, I used to repress these feelings inside my heart. It was perhaps due to these repressed feelings that I used to get angry and remain tensed in those days. Then I felt like doing something. But what to do and how to get the money was the very question in mind. Then I invested Rs 1500 that I had received from my maternal house for tika and started a business by placing the eatables-Biscuits and Chou Chou on an open corridor. My same small business now has flourished and shifted to shutter.
When I was not trusted by the villagers for even Rs 50, Gramin Mahila Uthan Kendra (Rural Women Development Center) trusted me because it gave me a loan amount of Rs 5000 on group collateral which I invested in the initial business has now turned into a loan investment of Rs 2,00000 for business as Gramin Mahila Uthan Kendra (RWDC) changed into Aatmanirbhar Laghubitta Vittiya limited. I have also planned to take a loan amount of Rs 5, 00000 after paying the last installment for loan amount of Rs 2, 00000. Geeta goes back to her past life and says, ” I used to remain tensed. My husband was sick and nobody trusted me for Rs 50 and 100 even in the village. It was the year 2013 when a office staff of Gramin Mahila Uthan Kendra (RWDC) Ranjana Chaudhary of Kalali came to this village to form women groups. Five of us formed Rapti Women Group at that time. The group was formed, but saving Rs 50 in the group every month was a difficult condition for me as I was starving for single morsel of food in those days. So decided to leave this group.
But now as I look back and feel how the RWDC had sent Ranjana miss to me in the form of a messenger of God. She told me many things to convince me to stay in the group. She told me that once I was in the women group, I could meet other sisters and we could resolve small problems faced in the village. Unity of women can reduce domestic violence. Leadership of women, skill and capacity to speak will be achieved through women group. One’s earning can be saved in the group which can secure our future. Besides loan will be given on group collateral once we are in the group and if the loan money is invested properly for business, the way for income generation will be opened and then we will be prestigious in the society is what Ranjana miss told me which touched me personally and I joined the group. I even got a loan of Rs 5000 to extend my shop. In the following days too I took a series of loans ranging from Rs 5000 to 50,000 from which I started pigs, poultry farm, duck farm and vegetable farm. I found this periodical installment payment as an easy mode of payment to repay the whole amount of loan within one year. After I completed cycle of installment payment I asked for Rs 80,000 as loan and increased the number of my pigs and poultry chickens. If the loan we take is invested in the right business it earns money as benefit and it is not difficult to pay the installment also. Our business is also extended in this way. I learnt about it when I joined the group. Now I can speak before others after learning to speak from the group, otherwise I had forgotten that I had passed up to class eight after seeing pain and miseries of life. I have also developed self confidence. I even teach other sisters to progress finically and not to waste their time in gossiping. Geeta now has built a concrete house after joining the group and succeeded in buyinga a land worth six katha and eleven dhoor from the income she earned from her business.
She is constructing another concrete house too. She does not have her own land to do professional agricultural farming, yet she has taken two bighas and seven kathas of land on lease to cultivate chilly, mustard oil and sweet potato. She has two more poultry farms too, while she has formally registered Shiva Shakti Agricultural and Bigs farm do continue her professional agricultural framings. She has employed a worker on salary to support her farming though her husband has also been fully supporting her farming works. She has also been hiring and mobilizing around 8 to 10 farm workers to support her on daily wages depending upon the need on daily basis. Geeta had a business of about Rs 25,00000 and after deducting all cost expenses, she had saved Rs 10,00000 as net profit from her business. She has been anointing the wounds of other weak women who are financially backward, thinking that they should not pass through the same painful condition which had to in the past. She also gives works to those who come to her. All those who used to insult and criticize her in the past have started appreciating and respecting her. Most of them now consult with Geeta to do anything in the community. “Gramin Mahila Uthan Kendra (RWDC)’s Atma Nirbhar Laghubitta Bittiya Limited has played a very significant role in bringing me to this far,” said Geeta Chaudhary. Geeta who now believes that nothing is impossible in this world has future plans to establish her own feed factory to feed pigs and poultry in her own locality as all raw materials are available in the village according to her. She believes that the feed goods will be sold in cheap prices and everybody will like it. If the feed industry is opened the local jobs will also be created for some people are her future plans. Geeta who was once boycotted by all neighbors and own family members now has been well recognized as successful women entrepreneur with the support of Gramin Mahila Uthan Kendra (RWDC).