In Naxal hit Karli, Shakti boost women’s confidence

Karli: Moving away from the distressful life of Naxal violence for decades, Karli in Chhattisgarh is moving step by step, inching closer to becoming an industrial hub.

The predominantly tribal region that has witnessed scores of gruesome Naxal attacks on security personnel is now an ideal example of how a small initiative can pave a way for empowering scores of women residing in the region where female literacy, as per the 2011 Census, is as low as 33 percent.

Recently, Karli’s development plan received a push with the state administration setting up Shakti, a garment factory. The aim to open the factory was to hone the skills of the unemployed women and provide them with a source of stable income.

At present, women working in this factory receive an income of Rs 3000 every month. Not only that, but an increment will also be given in the beginning of January. The factory at present is getting bulk stitching orders from big players in the readymade garments sector.

Meena Bhogami, a worker of the Shakti told ANI, “I am thankful that I got a job here. I stay with my ailing mother and all the responsibility of running a household is on me. Earlier, I used to keep hoping for a stable income. I failed many times to get a decent job. Later, I got to know that the state administration has opened Shakti factory where they required tailors. Without any hassle, I got the job in no time”.

Bhogami, also lauded the state administration for its noble move and making efforts to uplift the women of the society in Chhattisgarh.

Another woman, Rajshri, working in the same factory said, “I have done a course in stitching but earlier there was no employment in this region so I had to move to Tamil Nadu. With the salary of just Rs 8000 per month, I was not able to save money for my family living here. The moment I got to know that the factory has been opened in this area, I moved back.”

Giving out details about Shakti, District Collector Saurabh Kumar said that there are 25 women shareholders who are running this firm. “This company is of Government of India like Khadi and Village Industries. Private entities can come and give orders directly to Shakti. However, all the modern types of equipment required for making the cloth are provided by the state administration.”

Interestingly, the products manufactured by these women such as shirts, pants, uniforms, etc will be sold in big supermarkets opened in the metropolitan cities.