Vedanta Aluminium turns a widowed homemaker into an entrepreneur
Meet Basanti Kisan - the owner and operator of three successful businesses in Brundamal, Odisha. With an income of Rs. 12,000-18,000 a month, Basanti's life is comfortable now, but delve a little further, and she reveals the real story.
I was married at a very early age. Soon my husband took to alcohol and to make matters worse, he lost his job as well. I knew it was either me finding a way to earn some money or the family would starve. This is when I took matters into my own hands. I started working for other people. I did menial tasks while my husband shut himself from everything and ultimately died of alcohol abuse.
As I struggled to make ends meet, I desperately sought a chance to support my family in a better manner. I also started making brooms which I used to sell in the village market. I just knew that with a little bit of guidance and support, I could do much more.
To Basanti's bleak existence, hope came in the form of Project Vedanta's Integrated Jana Jivika Yojana (VIJJY*). She quickly learnt the nuances of business and even procured a loan to set up her own shop. Through the Subhalaxmi Women Cooperative scheme (a flagship project under VIJJY), Basanti turned her life around. She quickly diversified her business and set up a grocery shop also rapidly entering the competitive poultry trade.
Today, Basanti stands as a proud role model and inspiration to hundreds of Basantis within her village and across India.
*Under Vedanta Integrated Jan Jeevika Yojana (VIJJY) training is given on rearing goats, badi papad, reverse osmosis, puffed rice unit, driving, tailoring unit, leaf plate unit and systems for rice intensification. VIJJY also facilitated the development of 115 micro enterprises.